In quest of understanding myself as a Baptist, Evans, male member of our wondrous, amazing, and puzzling Homo sapiens species, I have in the past explored and looked through the windows of religion, psychology, genealogy, gender, genetics, and most recently, brain hemispheres.
Since discovering Jesus in the 30's and 40's, Freud in the 50's, Reich in the 60's, and Julian Jaynes in the 70's, my attention has shifted to include the mysteries of self and consciousness, especially as reflected in emerging data about differences in the two hemispheres–left and right, of our evolved brains.
This is a collection of assorted speculations made during my pilgrimage while looking through this fascinating window of soul/self/mind/body, with, of course, earlier explorations continuing to arise periodically, coloring my emerging views.
As in all my other writings, there is overlapping, redundancy, and often sloppy grammar in the sometimes conflicting stages of evolution in my extended play with making sense out of a wide variety of personal views–especially my own left brain orientation toward life in general (as evidenced in such rambling sentences as this one).
This collection of my journal entries is about how normal, average people may live, not about anatomy or brain science. Although much of the language used is based on brain terms, such as "left" or "right brain," plus associations drawn from scientific research on brain functioning, especially from data about persons with brain damage and/or actual removed hemispheres, finally my subject is normal living as historically evolved--from the perspectives of brain usage, not hemispheric facts per se.
This collection is finally about living well, not brain hemispheres.
The terms right and left brain are here intended both literally and metaphorically. I use trait and capacity associations with one half of the brain or the other, even though typical functions of each hemisphere may be transferred elsewhere in the brain, e.g., following injury. Also, my gender identifications are generalities; certainly there are notable exceptions to each capacity I relate to one half of the brain or the other, or to males and females.
In reality, we are all born and remain operationally whole brained, that is, we all have two hemispheres, a Corpus callosum connecting them, and we exist with both left and right brain mental activity (brain cells firing). But, psychologically speaking, after repression, typically in quest of essential social acceptance in early life, this ceases to be so in varying degrees.
Equally common, physically whole brained persons quickly begin after birth to major on capacities rooted in one or the other hemisphere, to avoid or suppress those of the opposite half, and eventually come to identify their sense of self with the accepted side.
Thereafter, major life efforts go toward "accentuating the positive (major half)" and, in effect, "eliminating the negative (disowned half)"–that is, consciously living as though we actually are the side we have identified as I/me, and, in effect, denying, evading, and/or repressing opposite side capacities.
I use the titles left brainers and right brainers to name those who more distinctively identify with one or the other. Commonly, males identify with left and females with right halves of the brain.
However, psychological identifications and conscious repressions neither erase nor negate a dis-identified brain half. Typically, related capacities of a repressed half continue to function, unconsciously, as it were, that is, outside the limited realms of conscious awareness, and–and this is the relevant fact here (to be amplified later): without the benefits of balancing forces which were perhaps at the primal roots of evolution in two brains to begin with.
Regardless of evolutional reasons, when human beings live without activation and conscious access to either half, dangerous, even destructive consequences are predictable and likely.
Specifically, left brain type consciousness is crucially important in mediating right brain based desires and emotions in all social contexts. Conversely, right brain based genetically generated powers are certainly needed in effecting left brain concepts in relational and political worlds.
Other examples of precarious life circumstances for half brain persons include:
– Right brainers need their left brain for prioritizing multiple options; for pragmatic, conscious deceptions; for essential fooling of others without fooling oneself; for conceptualizing and manipulating concepts (as functional in creative events and making objects, that is, "world shaping"; for reasoning versus rationalizing only; using sense in deciding.
– Left brainers need their right brain for sensitive worldly awareness; for "heart"; emotional activation for creative inspiration; intuition; genetic wisdom; multiple sense information (sensuality); passion powers; romance; self confidence.
Because I use common words and coined expressions with perhaps unfamiliar meanings, understanding my private definitions first may be useful in following my wondering trains of thought and observation. Here is my private dictionary:
– Right brain = source, basis, avenue of mediation and/or symbol for these human capacities: genetic knowledge (instinct awareness); primal desires ("wants"); amygdala learning (pre-conscious experience); emotions; sense perceptions; intuition; ESP; "Sophia's wisdom (perhaps inherited gender knowledge)." In general, all right brain capacities are commonly summarized as "feelings."
Right brain, as I mean the term, is primarily a metaphor for a constellation of human capacities distinguishable from other abilities I identify with left brain. Literal, physical areas or neuron connections in each hemisphere tied directly to named capacities are in some cases yet to be scientifically confirmed; but in either case my metaphorical use of the terms allows me to think/write about real human differences, how they may arise, and predictable consequences of their activation and/or repression.
Even if brain studies fail to confirm my positing certain traits and abilities with the right or left hemisphere, use of the metaphors so named remains, I think, valid for confronting obvious, consequential gender and social traits.
In common parlance, apart from knowledge about brain hemispheres and psychic repression/projection, right brain based human capacities are often recognized and summarized as heart, as distinguished from head.
Heart and head are older common names for newer knowledge about brain hemispheres. Heart has long represented ancient awareness of what we now understand as a part of human capacity based in the right hemisphere of the brain, not the blood-pumping organ in the chest, from which the metaphor draws its name.
Head, a later to evolve term, came to be used with the advance of consciousness, especially as evolved in males, and needed to name knowledge not arising from heart. Now we know that this type of human experience, also called "thinking" to distinguish from "feelings" of the heart, is actually rooted in the left hemisphere of the brain, literally in the head.
The pre-conscious wisdom of these terms representing two major components of human capacity lay in ancient awareness of the primal, life-essential nature of what we now more accurately see as right brain "thinking." Long it must have been known that death was more eminent with heart stabbing and/or removal than with injury or loss of any limbs or other internal organs.
I conclude that heart was an unconsciously wise choice of terms, given this ancient knowledge about its essential role in life versus death, reflecting an emerging awareness about the essential nature, the primary breadth and power of right brain based human capacities.
Then, as awareness of rapidly emerging consciousness, especially in males, with words as discrete, voice-able entities, with specific meanings, became more evident and operative–again, especially by males – with words coming from mouth and picked up by ears, "head" became a "sensible" name for what we may now recognize as left brain activity, especially of the Broca's area.
Further primal wisdom is reflected in the common knowledge that heart is far more important in human well being than head. "Using your head" is obviously useful in certain emergency situations (and in many male-type endeavors), but "having heart," as everyone knows, matters more than "making sense."
Also, the "shallower" implications of the observation, "all in your head" versus "knowing in my heart" reflects, I conclude, the common human wisdom that right brain knowledge is both "deeper" and more important than "upper level" head knowledge.
Even more relevant to this collection is the less commonly acknowledged fact that far more personal power is generated by right brain "feelings" (heart) activation than by "reasonable" left brain "thinking" in one's head. Powers of "making sense (left brain activation) can obviously be a useful addition to those generated by "feelings"; but when "reasons" are pitted against "emotions," the winner is easily predictable.
– Left brain = source of language, speech, "mind space," and possibly consciousness as utilized in reasoning, "making sense," "using your head," deciding based on discrete bits of information held in mind space–that is, "lighted (consciously held) knowledge" rather than dark "feelings." Left brain capacities are conversely summarized as "thinking."
– Brainers (Right and Left) = Brainer, either Right or Left, is a name for a psychic phenomenon, not a literal "thing" or person. Such a designation is more like a mental belief than a physical fact, and is based on another psychic capacity called identification or sense-of-self.
Identification, the underlying psychic process, is: defining or attaching one's internal sense-of-self to some external entity–either physical or mental.
Identifications are typically made unconsciously, "without thinking about it," based on some physical fact, an observable trait, or an imagined possibility.
Typical physical identifications include: with an ethnic group ("a Caucasian"); a nationality ("an American"); a region ("a Southerner"); family ("an Evans"); a team ("a Tiger"); a religion ("a Christian"); or a political party ("a Democrat"); or with a bodily attribute, such as: "a man" or "a woman").
Specific identifications may be with mental images, such as: "a good person," "a loser," or simply with adjective descriptions, like: "smart/dumb," "pretty/ugly," "strong/weak," "frivolous/determined," etc. When so, one may believe "I am a good person," or, "I am dumb (weak, ugly, smart, or a loser)."
The nature of all such identifications is such that once made, an individual lives-as-though the identification (or combination, as is usually the case) is an existential fact–that is, who-one-is, rather than a mere description of associations.
In these familiar forms of identification, one, in effect, leaves or avoids genetic realities–inherited instincts and actual capacities, in favor of limited perceptions, physical and/or mental. Instead of being and identifying oneself with existential truths–who one is born capable of actually becoming ("being oneself"), one opts for limited existence in other lesser categories.
Literally speaking, in all such identifications one moves, as it were, from reality based existence to living in metaphors–as though what is simply language based description is existential truth.
From the perspective of mind rather than matter, typical identifications are subjective beliefs (mental notions) as distinguished from objective facts. One may, for example, believe himself to be "a good person" when modes of behavior are quite different; or, be "a Christian" while living otherwise.
Once one forms any such identification, his sense-of-self, who he believes himself to liberally be, is tied to and limited by the nature of each such image.
Now back to my term brainer.
By right or left brainer I mean one who has identified his or her sense-of-self with capacities either inherent in or associated with one or the other brain hemispheres.
Rather than remaining existentially whole brained, as we are all born and remain in reality (unless damaged by accident or surgical removal), one in effect splits whole brain functioning into two parts, and then perceives ("believes") him or herself to be only one.
But such beliefs are mental only, not actual facts. Dis-identificated brain hemispheres do not cease to exist and function, only to operate, as it were, "on their own" without self associations, as though they are not me.
After dis-identification, real-but-limited human abilities for conscious use of that hemisphere's related capacities are not only lost to creative self control, but typically perverted into blind support for one's limited identifications (e.g., for "proving" the illusion to be reality).
For example, instead of using left brain capacities for objective reasoning, a right brainer may pervert these native abilities into rationalizing only–that is, creating quasi-reasons to support or justify subjective right brain "feelings" or desires.
Or, a left brainer who dis-identifies with his own right hemisphere, does not actually negate its capacities; he only keeps them outside his sense-of-self. He "believes they are not me." But then, still operative but outside his limited conscious control, he may blindly pervert, e.g., his emotions, into supports for his conscious reasons.
Although such perversions of yet active but dis-identified-with capacities of one's other brain half are common, the far greater and more personally dangerous consequence is denial and attempted repression of these potential personal abilities. Typical male left brainers, for example, may severely limit one's natural humanity ("personhood") when we "try to not be emotional (a 'sissy')" and give exaggerated attention to focus on such left brain abilities as "being reasonable," "making sense," and/or devotion to mental "understanding" of all mysteries, or physical "winning-at-all-costs."
Summary: Brainer, Right or Left = A grammatical personification for one who unconsciously lives as though he or she were the capacities either inherent in and/or commonly associated with one or the other brain halves; not a literal fact, as in rare cases of brain damage or surgical splits or removals, but a useful term for common psychological identifications.
In normal life, apart from brain disease, head injury or hemisphere surgery, we all actually use both halves, but often without awareness. Here, however, I mean the terms Right brainer or Left brainer for these distinguishable psychological states, as though their brains were literally separable.
Also, these brain based identifications are always in degrees. Even though I use the article "a" (e.g., "a Right brainer) implying a truly separate person, no one is functionally one or the other; but for clarity I personify and describe extreme degrees of each. My stereotyped Left brainer, for instance is a person nearing 100% identification with left brain capacities, and seriously repressed right brain abilities. Conversely, my metaphored Right brainer is almost totally engaged in ("living in/by") capacities associated with the right hemisphere.
– Identification = A psychic process in which one comes to associate his or her sense-of-self with a limited and distinguishable number of real and/or imagined capacities, traits, and/or patterns of coping and behavior.
Afterward, such a self-identified person lives-as-though the self-created identification is who he or she literally is, and any capacities outside this image are not me. In practice (daily life) the identified image is assumed to be "who-I-am."
Correlations between identity and actual reality are often poor or even non existent. In the process of creating such self identifications, imaged capacities and traits may be included, while actually existing ones are completely excluded. For example, a physically beautiful female may see herself (identification) as unattractive, even ugly; or an intellectually capable person may see him or herself as dumb–or vice versa.
Relevant here are those who identify themselves, either consciously or not, with human capacities associated with left or right hemispheres, and conversely do not see themselves with those of the opposite hemisphere.
When so, they may unconsciously try to avoid or repress their actual capacities in the opposite hemisphere. For example, a Left brain man typically avoids and/or tries to repress emotions, while Right brain females shun language definitions and logic.
After these common identifications, especially when opposite hemisphere capacities are left un-embraced and hence under-developed, one may be described as being weak or fragile in regard to an unidentified brain half. A highly intellectual man, for example, may be emotionally fragile, subject to easy manipulation by a woman's tears, not to mention, his own repressed feelings. Or, a very sensitive and romantic woman may have a fragile reasoning capacity and hence be vulnerable to clever male "lines."
– "Thinking" = In quotes to imply its colloquial rather than literal meaning, that is, a name for "making sense," "being reasonable," "acting logically," in contrast with "just being emotional," "not being sensible," or "acting irrationally (with no apparent reasons)."
Technically, "thinking" is a misnomer for a left brain mode of mental activity based on words, language, and logically ordered bits of discrete, conscious information. Its deeper motivations may be rooted in repressed right brain "feelings" and hence far less "sensible" than left brainers like to believe.
– "Feelings" = Also in quotes to imply colloquial rather than dictionary definitions. Although feelings may appear to be "irrational" or "just emotions" to left brainers, and even accepted as such by right brainers, they may cover a wide range of physical and mental capacities of which actual, bodily emotions are only a small part. Indeed, "reasonableness" in the larger context of space and time may be more characteristic of right brain activation than left brain logic limited to explanations of conscious information.
Past colloquial meanings, feelings typically include such diverse data as: instinct wisdom, amygdala learning, intuition, current and recalled sense perceptions, immediate observations, sensations, and, of course, emotions also.
Summary: A familiar word for a wide variety of human perceptions, drawn from the realms of bodily emotions, as distinguished from others based in mental concepts ("intellectual" or "thinking").
As intended here, feelings (vs. thinking) certainly includes physical emotions, but much more; and even though sometimes seen, especially by left brainers, as "just being emotional," right brain "feelings" often include and are based on "thinking" more comprehensive than reason-based "sense" of left brainers.
– Selfing = A coined word, not yet in the dictionary; a name (noun) for the most primal, gene-based human instinct and capacities evolved for its satisfactions; drawn from the familiar description selfish, intended for related drives, but without typical judgments attached to "being selfish" versus "unselfish."
Specifically, selfing involves genetic urges for survival and maximizing personal pleasures associated with drives evolved for "staying alive (e.g., eating, defecating, and creating desirable circumstances)."
– "Amygdala learning" = A coined term to represent possible personal patterns formed in deep, pre-conscious areas of the brain. Literally, the amygdalae are part of the lower brain limbic system involved in emotional processing and memory, as in, flight/fight reactions. I theorize that other primary "learning" occurs here in individual experience, such as, in response to space in the womb, sounds heard before birth, and initial reactions to birth and family circumstances. Although not in language based memory, these early acquired responses to perceived reality may continue to motivate basic life stances.
– Split brain = Metaphorical term for living as though hemispheres are actually split into two parts, only one of which is identified as me (who "I" am); not intended literally, as in medical research based on surgical or experimental divisions.
– Individuation = Natural human process of becoming a separate, relatively independent individual–that is, with severed self ("emotional") cords, even as umbilical cord cut at physical birth left one physically apart from others. Individuation is spiritual/self birth comparable to physical birth.
Individuation is only completed, if at all, when all natural capacities are personally embraced, without repression and projection onto gods, other people, or circumstances. When so, one is mostly selfing, with limited community involvements, and lesser concerns with replication. An individuated person is self responsible rather than socially dependent, that is, inter-dependent rather than literally independent or dependent.
Successful individuation is signified by:
– Individual responsibility; "taking care of oneself" without looking for care from others or blaming dissatisfaction on external causes; no sense of entitlement, "being special," or "owed a living."
– Inter-dependent versus either of the extremes, that is, recognizing both separation and connections, being a-lone-one and, paradoxically, a-part-of at the same time, and embracing the paradox comfortably.
– Embodied versus dis-embodied–that is, being body/soul as one, rather than body and soul (or self), as though each is a separable entity, perhaps temporarily united but capable of divisible existence, with the latter commonly judged as most important and/or everlasting.
– Embracing and activating all common and unique instincts and capacities ("wants" and "talents"), with discretion in society, but without repression and projection, as onto gods/devils, other people, and/or objects/circumstances.
– Seeing birth/death (beginning and ending of individual life) as equally real and inevitably joined, without judgments of good for the first and bad for the second, or indulgent regret related to the second.
– Split brain = metaphorical term for living as though hemispheres are actually split into two parts, only one of which is identified as me (who "I" am); not intended literally, as in medical research based on surgical or experimental divisions. )
Literally speaking, there is no such thing (person) as a Left or Right Brainer, as the terms may imply. All of us have and use two hemispheres; but there are significant differences which make these names useful in looking past anatomy and brain facts alone. Some are:
Split brain research on persons who have brain damage or injuries effecting the brain reveal certain specific hemispheric capacities, such as, left brain speed, especially in males, and right brain visual/spatial skills.
However, while this collection utilizes such research, my primary focus is on brain use in physically healthy, normal persons, with no brain damage. In other words, in language about brain, I am writing about average people.
"Right (or left) brainer, as I mean the term, is more psychological than biological, more metaphorical than literal. Although obviously rooted in physical hemispheres of the brain and its roots, and their distinguishable functions, I also intend other meanings which are non-physical, that is, more related to psyche than soma, mind than body.
My interest here is less about identifying human capacities and traits with specific cells or areas in the brain than establishing a language framework for distinguishing and comparing observable differences between humans. These differences may or may not be literally, and certainly not permanently, dependent on a specific set of brain neurons; but identifying the traits may be useful in coping with their practical operation in human relationships, as well as their relation to personal happiness.
Specifically, I associate psychic functions of consciousness, self, and self-identification with human capacities probably rooted in left and right brain hemispheres. Although these psychic phenomena cannot be scientifically identified with specific brain regions or cells in one hemisphere or the other, which might then be taken as cause or physical source, still hemispheric functions can be useful metaphors for clarifying such important human concerns as self, soul, and happiness.
This, at least, is my intention in this collection.
First, the term is descriptive rather than literal. Existentially speaking, no one is either one or the other brain hemisphere. Other than in cases of severe brain damage, we all have two hemispheres which are actually operative all the time. But in practice many of us live-as-though this is untrue, due to a psychic phenomenon I call self identification.
Beginning early in life, as best I can tell, we typically begin to utilize capacities related to one hemisphere more than the other in our genetic quests for survival and its enhancement. More commonly, boys major on capacities associated with the left half, girls with the right.
So far so good; in essential social acceptance using what works best for fitting in with family circumstances where "blue" or "pink" associations are typically important, is obviously smart. But in so doing, as boys cope with "blue" expectations and girls with "pink," we apparently begin to ignore, avoid, even to suppress using capacities of the half found to be less useful in social adaptation.
In time, as capacities for consciousness and language develop, what begins as merely functional tends to become habitual, as we begin to individuate and acquire a sense-of-self– "I" as different and distinguished from "them," and, relevant here, "I-as-male (blue)" or "I-as-female (pink)."
In this universal process of individuation, primarily based on gender differences, boys most commonly come to identify ourselves ("see ourselves as being") left brain related capacities, while girls do the same with right brain capacities–all this, of course, without any knowledge of anatomy or how the brain works.
In time, with continued practice, "blue" and "pink" associations become, as it were, "ingrained"–that is, so habitual that we easily come to see ourselves as literally being male or female, rather than persons with gender differences.
And relevant here is the functional, even pre-conscious, identification with left or right brain based capacities–most commonly, as noted, boys with left, girls with right. When so, even without psychological knowledge or words to name the phenomenon, males may begin to associate who we are with left brain operations, and consequently who we are not with right brain based capacities–and girls, vice versa.
I term this near universal psychic (not physical) phenomenon brain identification, with, most typically, males left brain identified and females right brain identified.
But self identification is not the same as activation; that we come to think of ourselves in one way or the other does not mean that the "foreign" brain half "goes away" or ceases to function, only that in mind's eye we cease thinking-of-it as "I (me)."
Instincts for "being ourselves," including whole-brained, continue to operate, only now with divided attention, and, worst still, with curtailed usage phasing into repressed activation and exaggerated self identity with one or the other brain hemispheric capacities.
Still, however genetic urges for wholeness (psyche and soma, plus left and right brain capacities), continue to move all humans, even if now unconsciously.
– This collection is about normal rather than damaged brains; more about psychology than physiology; about common associations with brain halves which may or may not be literally rooted in each hemisphere. In most cases, I suspect that future brain research will confirm these associations, but if not, the clarified differences may be useful in exploring improved personal living.
– Physically speaking, normal people without brain damage, are all whole brained, not right or left. We all, barring accidents and/or psychical damage, both have and use both halves of our brains in daily life; but psychically speaking, this is not so. In practice, that is, in ordinary life, most of us live as though we are split brained (in varying degrees), and are more one half or the other.
– Right/left brained = observable functioning and traits rather than confirmed anatomical facts.
– These terms are intended to be descriptive, useful in dealing with larger issues of good living, rather than literal, as though a "Left Brainer" did not also have (and use) his or her right brain. And vice versa. This collection is basically about "how we live" rather than anatomy of brains–that is, personal well (whole) being, not medical science.
Some of the attributes I associate with each hemisphere have been scientifically proven (e.g., speech with Broca's area of the left hemisphere), but others are yet to be confirmed by split brain research. I suspect that continued research will prove my associations to be correct; but even if not so, my intention of the terms here is as names for functional differences more than anatomical accuracy. Should trait genes research later prove me wrong, my usage of the terms would remain unaffected.
– Mediated versus contained
Some of the capacities I associate with a brain half, especially the right brain, are, I think, probably mediated-through rather than contained-in–that is, associated with its operation even if not rooted in specific areas of that hemisphere.
For example, I speculate (and assume here) that lower brain stem (Amygdala, limbic system, "Reptilian Brain") instincts and emotions, e.g., "wants," fight/flight, pleasure/pain reactions and primal "feelings," like anger, as well as bodily sensations, are, in effect mediated to awareness via right brain activation rather then left.
Consequently, even if their anatomical sources are elsewhere in the body, I associate them here as right brain capacities, and hence identify them with "right brainers."
– Operative versus acknowledged
Even though capacities not in one's self identified brain half are not acknowledged (and identified as me), they continue to operate unconsciously. A left brainer, for example, may continue to experience right brain "feelings," but not consciously acknowledge them, even to repress them from awareness.
Or, a right brainer may continue to unconsciously use left brain reasoning abilities, e.g., in support of right brain based desires ("rationalization") rather than in the distinctively left brain way.
– Not gender specific
Although left brainers (as I use the term here) are more commonly male, and right brainers female, this is certainly not always true. Many females are far more left brained than their right brained (e.g., husbands), and vice versa. For example, professional females in science may be more left than right brained, while professional actors and poets may be more right brained.
But here I write mostly about averages, even though there are many notable exceptions.
– Degrees of identification
For clarity, I use the terms brainers as though one is, or could be, one or the other. In reality identification with either brain half is by degrees–that is, some are more right brained, some more left, but probably no one is 100% either. Also, switches in activation are common in emergencies or unusual situations. For example, one who is typically a "confirmed" left brainer may under stress switch to right brain functioning, and vice versa.
When one is extremely split in brain hemispheres, that is, strongly identified with one half or the other, these are some of the common results:
– Left brainers cope by "thinking."
– Right brainers cope by "feelings."
Explanations to right brainers may be left brain attempts to diffuse cloaked right brain aggression with logical language, and, vice versa, right brainer's "outbursts" may be attempts to defend oneself against reasoning with emotions.
– Right brainers may have fragile thinking. "Don't get logical with me."
– Left brainers may have fragile feelings. "Don't get emotional with me."
– Right brainers may protect their fragile mind against ideas not their own.
– Left brainers may protect their fragile heart against feelings not their own.
Obviously the following distinctions are more stereotypical than commonly literal–that is, about intellectually viewed differences which may never occur so clearly in real life; but for delving into this fascinating realm of possible brain based human differences these distinctive associations may be useful in initial explorations.
The words on the left of each difference indicate the ball park arena of the noted distinction.
LEFT BRAIN RIGHT BRAIN
Gender: Males identify self with left Females identify self with right
Bonds: Males with words Females with heart
Colloquial names: "Thinking" "Feeling"
Virtue: "Makes sense" is sacred "Feels right" is sacred
Language: Literal as in dictionary Figurative, as in metaphors
Decisions: Labored, logical, "arrived at" Speedy, spontaneous, "come to"
Thinking: Focused, sequential, linear Holistic, random, circular
Excludes emotions Depends on feelings
Power: Relatively weak Naturally strong
Confidence: "Fragile ego" "Always right"
Winning matters, affirmation for confidence Affirmation for power but
not for confidence
Ethics: Law, rules, right/wrong Situational good
"My son did wrong" "Yes, but he's my son"
Consciousness: Critically important Unnecessary
"Conscious competency" "Unconscious competency"
Values: Function Appearances
If it works, looks be damned Looks mainly, comfort secondary
Memory: Mediates discrete bits of language-based Genetic wisdom, Amygdala learning
data, acquired information, "facts"
Religion: Theology (ideas of God) Practice of spirit
Authority (commandments) Communion (connections)
Hierarchy; right beliefs Eclectic beliefs
Male god Female goddess
Self: "Who am I?" is important Less important; already knows, even without wordable answer
Self-definition, like word definition, matters Self-vague matters more
Commitment: Yes or no; will you or won't you? Maybe I will/maybe not
Causes: Dedicated to causes Dedicated to self, family
Independence: Standing alone counts Outwardly dependent as stance
Separation matters Connections matter
Compliments: Moved by Uses
Inspiration: Lacking heart, needs inspiration Self motivated
Directions: Resists, is threatened by Takes, uses as needed
Gods (Idolatry): Creates and serves Accepts and uses but does not adore/serve
Given to idolatry, blind worship Sets up as god, but for power not worship
Elsewhere I have explored what I call the "Creative Process" of all human experience. The following terms on the left of each noted difference are drawn from this theory as related to brain hemispheres:
Left Brain Right Brain
Perceptions: Vision is primary Five senses primary
Things, this vs. that Whole picture; both/and
Images: Words, named "its" Pictures, visual images
"What is it?" "How does it look, feel, smell"
"What's its name, class?"
Emotions: Avoided; deprived Opened to; embraces
How it feels is irrelevant How it feels is critical
"What's want got to do with it?" Answer: "Everything"
Concepts: Sense = logic/reason Sense = bodily perceptions
"Makes sense" Sensitive to
Not sensual Not sensible
Decoding is critical Decoding not important
"What does it mean?" "Meaning is irrelevant"
Explanations crucially important Relatively incidental if it works
Mystery is threatening Mystery is exciting, even comforting
Jumps over Stage 3 to 4 Lingers at 3, avoids 4
Time, numbers, winning idolized "Time means nothing to you"
Notches on bed "If it reaches me, Okay"
Idolatry of winning "It's just a game"
Left hemisphere Right hemisphere
Thinking: Linear, sequential Circular, holistic
discrete mental entities Connected perceptions
("Circular" is use of left brain geometry and a concept, not a literal fact)
Words (language-based) Pictures (sense-based images)
sights, sounds, smells, etc.
Right brain picture images are usually a combination of sense perceptions formed into a "holdable" whole, somewhere in body, heart, bones, or mind space. They are known in awareness as "feelings," impressions, desires, urges, inclinations. No words (names) are necessary for clear right brain thinking. Words are mostly useful for communication with others, but hardly needed for right brain mental clarity while one is alone.
Right brainers' word use in private is more figurative than literal--that is, used metaphorically for making comparisons between "feelings" rather than relating to dictionary type definitions. Concern is for accurate metaphorical comparisons of differing perceptions, not literal meaning of words (as is so for left brain thinking). Objective word definitions, as commonly understood and described in dictionaries, are relatively incidental in comparison to personal assignments (e.g., "left" can mean "right" if one is thinking thusly).
This freedom to assign personal word meanings is in sharp contrast with left brain thinking dependent on dictionary type accuracy, or at least as shared with other listeners and/or readers.
Metaphorical (versus literal) right brain thinking typically utilizes similes ("like...") and personifications; for example, "This (perception) is like that one," or, "Dirt is driving me crazy." Superlatives and hyperboles are also common with right brain thinking which is more concerned with accurate representation of, e.g., an emotion in language, than with word definitions. For example, bad tasting food (a taste sensation) may be described as "worst food I've ever eaten,"–using a superlative description, not necessarily about gradations of taste and/or time.
Right brain thinking is inherently difficult to translate into left brain type language because: 1) It is sensation rather than language based, that is, uses picture images rather than verbal images, as in left brain thinking. Left brainers need only "look up" or acquire an objective name (word for representing a perception), but face no such challenge of translating words into metaphors or feelings as would be understandable by right brainers.
A comparable challenge to a left brain thinker trying to communicate with right brain thinking would be to avoid all literal meanings of words (forget dictionary definitions) and translate names and concepts into metaphors before speaking, e.g., to say what he means ("is thinking") is like (metaphor) versus is (as objectively defined).
WHOLE-BRAINEDNESS OR BI-CAMERAL MIND
We are born, in effect, "whole-brained"–that is, with two brain hemispheres functioning as a unit, each firing its own neurons, making its natural connections in cooperation with the other half, much the same as ancient peoples were in bi-cameral mind eras (as posited by Julian Jaynes). In this whole-brained state, awareness and consciousness are, I theorize, essentially the same--synonyms, we might say.
But shortly, even in the nursery, as language is becoming possible, degrees of self repression are begun in service of social survival and expanded satisfactions–that is, of successful coping with current circumstances, aimed most basically at survival and its enhancement, staying alive and feeling good; avoiding pain/finding pleasure, as determined by primal genes.
Increasingly obvious perception distinctions between thises and thats (e.g., hot/cold, bitter/sweet, soft/hard, loud/low, etc.), are eventually expanded to recognized distinctions between I and it, e.g., me and mother. "Individuation," we might later call it, is occurring naturally as an infant begins the longer process of becoming a separate person in society–that is, in company of others, "one among and with many."
But as this natural acknowledgment of separate existence begins to follow its normal course in a whole-brained way, with, we might say, "all neurons firing naturally," or, in a car analogy, "with all cylinders operating," a consequential change is initiated as repression begins.
Before, while yet whole-brained and reacting/responding naturally as guided by genes alone, an infant "is what he/she is." "What you see is what you get"–that is, "I" and "it"–mind and body, are yet the same; or, literally speaking, there is as yet no "I" or "self" distinguishable from physicality (whole-brained presence).
Soon however, even before grunts and groans plus tears are transformed into words (and smiles), obvious gender differences ("things" versus "no-things") become the basis for consequential social differences, beginning with symbolic real colors, as in, blue rather than pink (and vice versa), even while actual bodily differences are relatively minor, and the stage is set for a widening gender gap based less on anatomical and genetic differences, than on social projections and requirements thrust upon boy/girl infants.
Natural development of I/person, who happens to have testicles or ovaries, is quickly supplanted by social agendas described as, "It's a boy," or, "It's a girl," soon to be personally confronted as an infant learns to be a boy or girl, rather than a whole-brained person.
Just as natural self-identity is becoming possible–that is, I as distinguished from it, me from them, or separate-self-in-world, more obvious gender distinctions become a child's primary external identification, quickly followed by personal efforts in socially determined directions–that is, penised-ones to be boys "who will be boys," and vaginaed-ones to be "sugar and spice, and all things nice," not in any way "unfeminine."
Relevant here is one major element in these overall gender distinctions in a child's emerging sense of self versus world, namely, how he or she comes to "see"–accept, relate to, activate, and most crucially of all, identify oneself with, the capacities and powers rooted in right and left hemispheres of the human brain–that is, the degree to which one continues to be (exist-as) whole-brained, or tries to live-as-though limited to being one or the other half of who we all begin as being.
In reality, a whole brain is unrepressed. In our natural human state, before we get split brained in quest of essential social acceptance, we respond to presented reality from a combination of two data sources:
1) Genetic directives–inherited, "ingrained," urges aimed primarily at creative living as individuals, and secondarily at pro-creativity–that is, creating more of ourselves. These two drives ("instincts") are most basically rooted in dark forces to seek pleasure and avoid pain, to maximize personal satisfactions in primal life processes of breathing, eating, eliminating, and moving.
2) Personally acquired knowledge about how to best accomplish fullest satisfactions in both creativity and pro-creativity in one's immediate circumstances. This reservoir of personal "learning"–that is, experience in the proverbial "School of Hard Knocks," begins in the womb while we are in an embryonic stage and senses are developing, beginning with feeling (tactile sensing), hearing, tasting, and smelling, soon to be followed by sight after womb exodus. Its aim is genetic activation/satisfaction.
Obviously this circumstantial "education" is without the benefit of language which must wait for many months before becoming an additional tool in this personal quest; but it is rooted in other developing bodily organs and equipment, such as, lower brain stem, amygdala, emotional abilities (expansion of "feeling" from tactile sensing to wider "impressions",) and, of course, expanding brain hemispheres which allow for retaining what is "learned (memory)."
After language is acquired, this pre-verbal "education" may be named with terms such as, "amygdala learning," "emotions (what one "feels like doing"), "wants," intuition, ESP (extra or beyond sense knowledge alone).
Although the basis for acquired knowledge is internal, that is, rooted in inherited bodily (physical) capacities, its focus is on the external (outside, beyond skin) world–that is, circumstances–people and conditions, "how-thing-are," the presented world, all that one can grasp with inherited capacities for perception.
"Circumstances" and perception probably begin with: space in womb, amount and quality of nutrients via umbilical cord, volume and nature of sounds (as auditory capacities develop), motherly movements, and then, probably, tastes and smells.
Womb exodus–movement through the birth canal, is the first, perhaps traumatic, personal, whole body, experience, quickly followed by an ever-escalating number of new experiences/encounters, "learning" events.
Just as earliest "education" begins in mother's womb, the vast majority of early life experiences involve her presented presence–that is, her body for nourishment, holding, protection, comfort, and, ideally, love; and her spirit, that is, her emotional presence, her attentions, attitude, and modes of treatment, especially her presence and/or absence.
In later to be acquired religious terms, she is essentially a functioning earthly goddess in every child's early world, long before ideas of an other-worldly, heavenly god become possible.
The whole-brained infant's world is characterized by sharp sensitivity to presented circumstances (first focused in one's goddess-like mother), quick learning ability, and a rapidly developing "impressionable, "two-hemisphered "mind." "Lessons" learned in the first few months of this pre-language "classroom" will become the rich basis for lifetime directives–"PhD degrees," we might say, for post-graduate, pre-grave experience.
But positive, expanded escalation in ever-advancing creativity is dependent on a pivotal psychic event/process which probably begins with "weaning," "toilet training," "socializing," and entrance-into-community where one-alone is merged into one-with-others.
Before these pivotal events begin, while one is yet whole-brained, worldly decisions–that is, how/where to move, what to do, what sounds (later words) to make, what to touch, where and how long to look, what facial expressions to make, etc., are all relatively spontaneous, arising, as it were, from the wealth of above noted sources 1 and 2, that is–inherited and acquired personal knowledge. Simply and profoundly, whole-brain persons "just do what comes naturally," mediated and moderated by prior learning about "what has worked before" in the presented world.
Whole-brain children opt for creative ways to survive and maximize natural (genetic, bodily) satisfactions, moved, as it were, by personal forces within and without–that is, personal urges and desires (instincts) and outside powers-that-be (circumstances and other people).
In this whole brain state both hemispheres of the brain operate in natural harmony, with perceptions from instincts, reflexes, senses, brain stem, and lower brain merged into awareness as basis for activation in the world–mainly for expression, monitored with learning about functional concealment (de-ception).
In this whole brain state of relative awareness, alternating between wakefulness and sleep, there is, as best we can tell, no conscious sense-of-self as a separable entity apart from body, no internal "I," ego, or soul distinguishable from personal perceptions.
Awareness and con-sciousness are essentially the same, synonyms, we might say after later splitting has occurred; but while yet whole brained, perception/awareness and "sciousness" or "knowing" occur as one.
Or, "what you see is what you get." There may be artful ("learned") guile aimed at maximizing personal satisfaction, creativity, in arranging circumstances with limited resources available; but no guilt, shame, or pride as will later become possible with the psychic creation of an "I" accomplished by learning language and creating splits between brain hemispheres.
There is awareness–an inherited creature capacity, as evidenced in all animals, and limited knowing (as participle), but no with-knowledge or "con-sciousness" in the sense of self "having" (as a mental possession) knowledge. Personal learning which begins in the womb and escalates rapidly after birth, as an expression of inherited directives, both aimed at survival and its enhancement (more pleasure/less pain), for example, "amygdala learning" and "emotional satisfaction"), is as yet synonymous with awareness.
Gender different directives based on XY and XX chromosomes in all cells of males and females are operative, reflected after birth in, e.g., boy's aggressiveness (playing with guns) and girl's "mothering instincts" (playing with dolls); but in whole brainedness these simply exist as distinguishable interests and modes of creative expression.
But a second source of gender related powers are also operative in every infant's life, beginning soon after birth (and possible even before, with sonogram information about gender), namely, parental and social beliefs, attitudes, and directives, differing for males and females.
Just as there are gender different genes, so, and even more so, there are typically gender different memes (social directives); and the latter are, I conclude, the most significant force in evolving consciousness, both an analog "I", a gender-determined self, and, perhaps most significantly of all, setting the stage for movement from whole brain "mental health" to split brain existence and beginning of "mental illness" in proportion to degrees of split-brainedness.
When as yet whole brain infants, with small degrees of genetic, pre-puberty gender differences, are confronted with significantly more powerful social memes with sharp and focused attention on gender differences, the seeds of eventual "mental illness" are unwittingly planted.
Genetics, more aimed at personhood than manhood or womanhood, are met with forceful memetics which relatively ignore natural humanity (personhood) in favor of attention focused on gender differences. From typical parental and social perspectives, a whole brain infant is either a boy or a girl, not a varying combination of male/female attributes among many others far more related to non-gendered personhood.
Thereafter, with relatively minor genetic gender directives in contrast with comparable greater memetic forces, an initially whole brain infant soon faces the challenges of trying to literally be a boy and not be a "sissy"–that is, a girl–and vice versa for those born with ovaries rather than testicles.
While genes are "saying," in effect, "be human," "be your whole self," "be a person with 44 chromosomes directing creativity and only 2 aimed at pro-creativity," "be," that is, "whole brained," memes (powerful social forces) are commanding, as it were, "No, you be either male or female, one or the other, not both/and." Once a single Y chromosome guides gametes to become external testicles rather than remaining internal ovaries, a person with an accompanying "thing" rather than an entrance and cavity, then external social "voices" become loud and clear, in comparison with inner urges toward personhood and gender voices relatively quiet in pre-puberty years of life.
WHOLE BRAIN THINKING
Whole brain thinking begins with right brain awareness of physical perceptions from both the outside and inside world, embraces invigorating powers generated in formed images, and speedily crosses the Corpus callosum, as it were, to include left brain capacities for de-coding images into concepts, which can be carefully weighted in mind's eye before words are said and/or actions taken.
More commonly, however, females stop at the stage of power-filled right brain images and remain moved by spontaneous motivations, while men typically jump quickly over such invigorating "feelings" into the use and safety of left brain "thinking," which, unfortunately for us who do so, may be much more "sensible" but, somewhat severed from bodily sensations, is also weaker.
Via un-repression and re-connection of brain hemispheres, fragile left brain insights are reunited with power-filled right brain images, leading to reinvigorated whole brain living.
Whole brain thinking is the mental process of weighing right brain perceptions with left brain language based knowledge. Insofar as well being is concerned, merging of data from both hemispheres is to be distinguished from simple firing of brain cells or mental activity per se.
Certainly mental activity in which synaptic connections are made is also involved in whole brain thinking, but the two are by no means synonymous. In fact, as best I can tell, whole brain thinking is relatively rare in comparison with what is commonly called "thinking." This most familiar type of mental activity may best be recognized in these common forms:
– Re-cycling former thoughts now ingrained in memory.
– Repeating thoughts of others, either heard or read.
– Recalling old or accepted beliefs in current mind space.
– Vicariously entertaining emotions of others.
– Being mentally tickled or stimulated by stories.
Whole brain thinking is entertaining your own thoughts rather than accepting those of others, that is:
– Weighing personal right brain experience on scales of left brain sense.
– Creating concepts which unify personal images.
– Delighting in experienced sensations.
– Sharpening crude generalizations into honed ideas.
– Imagining yet to be realized possibilities.
– Fantasizing socially unacceptable scenarios which give form and shape to private desires.
– Dreaming improbable, even impossible situations which fascinate you.
Whole brain thinking is honest versus contrived, arising from within rather than without; "as I honestly see things," as contrasted with "as I should," or, "as others do," or, "as they would approve."
Whole brain thinking is self-affirming, or literally self-in-expression, that is, neither requires nor needs other-confirmation to be known as "right for me."
Nor is whole brain thinking inherently judgmental of contrary views, or inclined to "evangelism (need to convince others of its validity)."
Whole brain thinking is lively, always in process, moving on, constantly being revised with each bit of new information, additional perceptions and evolving versus constant.
Whole brain thinking is believing versus "having beliefs"; faithing versus "having faith"–that is, revealed more in participles than nouns.
Whole brain, natural mental activity, before or after repression and self identification with one or the other hemispheric capacities, begins with deep right brain mediated wisdom ("feelings") and quickly begins "weighing" (comparing information) and options with acquired left brain knowledge, thereby phasing speedy volition into reasoned decisions ("learning") before expression in outward speech or actions–that is, creative movements in the world as perceived.
– Whole brain thinking is characterized by: "open-mindedness"–that is, conscious "feel-ability," sense-ability, hear-ability, smell-ability, and do-ability (creativity)–or, honesty in desires, emotional responses, sensitivity to surroundings, listening to others, and freedom in actions ("presence").
As such, it is non-judgmental. There is no "playing god," idolatry, or "putting up or down" on others or any personal perceptions.
Whole brain thinking is prejudiced in the sense of holding a wealth of right brain and older personal data, but not rigidly so, as evidenced in being "closed minded"–not open to new data, as in, desires, feelings, opinions of others, and/or action options.
– There is no internal conflict, as evidenced in males "trying not to be emotional (sissy)", or compulsively compelled to "understand everything," or to cloak all mystery with "reasonable explanations," as well as to "avoid taking directions."
Or, across gender lines, whole brained females are not addicted to and determined by "feelings," "gut reactions," "comfort," or unacknowledged desires, avoiding or discounting left brain reasoning and only rationalizing, not open to hearing others or acting beyond private prejudices.
– Repressed, right brain identified persons, typically female, live primarily determined by right brain thinking, beginning with genetic and acquired un-languaged experiential knowledge ("feelings" as contrasted with left brain type "thinking).
They are hence largely limited to right brain volition alone (versus left brain type decisions), and appear to be "reacting," "not thinking," or "just being emotional" and "unreasonable." Their dis-identified-with left brains are mainly used to quickly grasp any languaged information, as from TV, newspapers, magazines, books, or "someone saids,,,," and use it for rationalizations as needed to explain their "feelings" to left brain "thinkers" (or to themselves when feeling unconfident at the time).
– Split brain living predictably results in loss of creativity and "feeling stressed," depressed, "out of sorts," "on edge," etc.
These are my speculations about what un-repressed, whole brained humans are like, or what might be anticipated if one actually un-represses him/herself:
– Jesus: "become again as a little child..."
– Adam and Eve: "naked and not ashamed"
– Jaynes: "bicameral mind"
– Whole-brained; both hemispheres operating in harmony and accord with each other, including dark, right brain, "genetic wisdom" and lighted left brain "reasoning" based in consciousness, language, and acquired knowledge. Whole-brain action is right brain volition tempered with left brain decisions–that is, spontaneous inclinations rooted in desire, emotions, and experience, weighted on scales of sense-making before worldly expression.
– 90% personhood; 10% gendered; mostly concerned with selfing; less concerned with self-replication.
– Continually creating world/self; responding to and shaping presented world as personally perceived in immediate circumstances in creative ways, using limited capacities to maximize satisfactions, minimize pains, rooted first and mostly in instincts to survive well, and secondly in drives for self-replication.
– Openness to presented world; "open-bodied" and "open-minded" as in the Creative Process (amplified elsewhere); summarized as: continually 1) perceiving (sensing), 2) emoting, 3) imaging, 4) conceiving, 5) becoming, and 6) expressing, in accord with expanding capacities and personal experience (acquired knowledge).
– Always receiving and computing (weighing) new data on scales of past knowledge, both inherited and acquired, discerning sharply, discriminating carefully, but without judgment; adapting quickly to all perceived data in continually creative ways.
– Con-fident ("with-faith") and "happy" when instincts are operative and relatively satisfied, protected by inherited "emotions" for natural fear as reflected in fight/flight directives; geared for pleasure, fun, "feeling good." Natural existence is inherently spirited ("spiritual"), but without divisions as reflected in organized religions or separations between "sacred" and "secular" aspects of life.
– Whole-being; embodied rather than "emminded"–that is, identified with inherited selfing capacities rather than an illusionary "self," "soul," analogue "I" or "me," as though one has or is in a body.
– Desire ("wants") is most primal motivation for all worldly expressions, mediated to personal awareness via right brain capacities including genetic wisdom, emotions, and passion. In whole-brain existence right brain motivations are mediated in the world (expressed or "acted out") in accord with left brain capacities for consciousness (holding right brain data and acquired knowledge in "mind space")--for weighing, as it were, on scales of reason (sense-making) before translating into worldly expressions. Personal "learning," beginning in the womb and escalating rapidly after birth, is used in creative adaptation to immediate circumstances.
– Continual changing (creating world/self) in accord with expanding capacities (e.g., escalated consciousness), advancing desires, new perceptions (experience or "learning"), and ever changing world and personal circumstances. Without repression, humans, in effect, "wake up in a new world" every morning, like little children or the proverbial goose, except with the benefit of ever expanding knowledge available for increasingly "smarter" movements.
– Personal responsibility; instinctive selfing is naturally expressed in ever-expanding "individuation," that is, moving from initial dependency on others (beginning with mother) to rapidly evolving "self-responsibility"–that is, innate urges to "take care of #1" as revealed in "wanting what I want when I want it." Naturally, we want to "do things for ourselves (e.g. tie out own shoes, et al)" rather than continuing dependent living, and/or "doing for others."
Natural social concerns for other-approval and/or "helping others" are rooted in selfing urges which need others for fuller activation, and/or maintaining our "gene pool"–that is, other humans with some of our personal genes.
Individual fulfillment is rooted in activation of personal capacities, that is, from within rather than without. Only after repression do we begin to seek external fulfillment, that is, being made whole/happy by or from other persons.
– Gender differences (10% of humanity); first of all, gender itself exists on a personal continuum rather than a complete distinction as male or female–that is, on a sliding scale, as it were, with maleness on one end and femininity on the other, with each individual existing at moving points between the opposites. All humans, with at least one X chromosome in every cell, have varying degrees of "female" capacities. Inherently, we all begin with undifferentiated gender (basically female) and only become "male" if one Y chromosome accompanies each X, changing internal ovaries into external testicles.
Obviously, those with two X's in each cell remain more "female," while us with only one powerful X and a relatively weak Y, phase into "male"; still we are all born with more and lesser degrees of what will later be recognized as "female" capacities.
Insofar as gender differences are concerned, females with XX chromosomes in each cell are the primary gender; and, given the far greater powers of larger X chromosomes and lesser forces inherent in smaller Y's, those with two X's are statistically more capacitied ("superior") than us with only one X and a "weaselly Y" in each cell.
This genetic difference is further evidenced by the obvious fact that females inherit the massively greater responsibility for "making babies" (species reproduction), while males are only required to "service" them with sperm–not to mention the social fact that additional responsibility for successfully rearing children largely falls into female hands also.
Totally apart from larger issues of personhood supported by 44 other chromosomes in each cell, female roles in species survival reasonably (evolutionary wisdom) call for greater capacities than do male roles primarily aimed at "services" only–that is, sperm, supplies, and protection, for shared replication. Perhaps this also accounts for evolution of larger Corpus callosums (brain connections) in females, supporting whole-brain functioning, and "holistic thinking" in contrast with male needs for "focused" attention as well as "emotional control."
Speculations about causes aside, these are more obvious gender related human characteristics I have observed:
– Males: 1) Primary instincts and inherited genetic wisdom focused on finding, seducing, and fucking potentially conceivable females, summarized as "discriminate sex."; 2) Competitive urges with all other males, reflected in inherited urges to "be #1" and/or "win" over all competing males with similar #1 instincts; 3) Aggressive capacities in service of #1 and #2.
– Females: 1) Primal instincts and inherited "Sophia's Wisdom" for attracting best available males, first for impregnation with strongest sperm, and secondly for needed services in child rearing ("hunks" and "good husbands"); 2) Cooperative urges, especially with other females, for success in acquiring ("gathering"), managing, and keeping resources, services, and supplies needed for survival and child rearing ("mothering instincts"); and 3) Inherent drives for making and keeping peace as essential for family structures needed for genetic replication (self survival and child rearing).
This is another name for whole brained, that is, successful individuation, existing comfortably "on one's own," both alone and in company of others; having embraced genetic drives both for selfing and community, being apart-from as well as apart-of.
Specifically, this means not dependent on either social and/or other approval for "being one's male or female self,"–that is, dependent on memes, such as, What They Think (others in general) or any woman's being a "missing half" (right brain), supplying "heart" to a left brain man.
Being naturally male in current society requires (is not possible without) whole brain-edness, that is, being both left and right brained, without identification with one or the other hemispheric capacities, and hence inevitably caught in internal conflicts related to being split brained.
Only to the extent of one's whole brainedness is responsible male sexuality, that is, being our inherited masculine selves, possible.
What, I speculate, would we humans be like if natural desires were unrepressed?
– Overall: movements, decisions, volition, will power would be operative in creating world/self in expression/harmony with genetic drives.
– Primarily, right brain, spontaneous volition would be weighed on balances of left brain knowledge (mostly about consequences in the world), leading to sensible decisions (either in expression or deception).
– No shame/guilt as commonly felt/understood, that is, as a consequence of religious and/or social "bad" behaviors or deviant beliefs.
– Beyond "good and evil" as commonly judged after eating the symbolic fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil (in biblical imagery)–that is, unconsciously assuming godhood and omniscience.
– Reasonable social involvement/management, including services to less fortunate and/or incapable humans; but as an element of responsible selfing, not a religious virtue (as in, "helping others" versus self), or in secret quest of rewards, either now or later (e.g., in heaven later if not in current social accolades, like honors, trophies, etc.).
– No looking to get emotional fulfillment, to be made happy from others, as in, falling in love, marriage, etc. As voiced in an early Fellowship poem: "Seek no peace outside yourself, in red...."
– Only realistic powers in the meme, What They Think, versus magical and/or use of other-affirmation to evade challenges of self affirmation. In this realistic relationship with communal powers, one would, I conclude, be constantly wary of compliments and other-approval, since either can be such an easy "out" from responsible presence.
– Personal fulfillment would come in creative living rather than being limited to possible rewards from gaining other-approval and/or social affirmation, that is, in world/self creation rather than pleasing others.
– One would be in a continual process of withdrawing/reclaiming projected powers and un-repressing one's natural self, focusing on the process of creative living in each present moment, rather than on some imagined time/event of arrival.
EARMARKS OF WHOLE BRAIN (UNREPRESSION)
– Uniqueness; "being different," even though sharing perhaps 98% of all capacities with all other human beings; even so, unique in all the world, in all time, never to be duplicated again, due to the nature of not to be reproduced combinations of male/female genes. 98% common, 2% unique.
–Limits on all external identifications, as with family, ancestors, ethnic groups, communities, country, clubs, teams, and friends.
– Self-identified; daring to literally be different, with joy versus hiding, and/or regret.
– Valuing integrity, individual wholeness ("being oneself") more than all else, including genetic instincts for self survival and replication, and any or all social acclaim.
– Creating world/self with creative combination of common and unique capacities.
– Embracing real connections; being-apart-of without any negation of individuality.
– Realism of memes, communal acceptance, What They Think, versus exaggerated dependence in escape from embraced uniqueness.
– Only "real" posing, versus habitual attempts to "look good" and impress others.
– Cooperative sharing relationships versus dependent, as with secret hopes for external salvation, as in "missing half" romantic alliances.
– No longing to be taken care of, as still seeking a lost mother; no victimhood or "poor little me."
– Self responsibility without regret.
– Selfing continually without having a self to defend/protect/advance.
– Creating careful images for communal acceptance and social functions, without ever identifying oneself (selfingness) with either.
– Fooling others as appropriate and functional without ever fooling oneself.
– With anticipation, but without expectations.
– Sometimes being with others without ever ceasing to be alone, even in the midst of company.
–Deceiving for practical reasons only, never for psychological escapes; otherwise going symbolically "naked in the world," especially when artfully clothed for pragmatic reasons.
– Using available resources for selfing purposes with deep gratitude and no sense of personal deserve ("rights").
– Embracing inherent "right-to-be-here," honestly and uniquely present, as oneself; but without any personal rights over nature, animals, or any other person.
– Always faithing, without ever having faith; believing without attachment to any belief.
– Self-affirmation, feeling good about personal creations without ever escaping into pride and/or shame.
SELF AND WHOLE-BRAIN
In a whole-brain state, that is, before emerging consciousness and repression allow for illusions of splitting, there is no self as such, which would allow for I versus it–with it assumed to be a separate entity, such as, a body or soul, as in notions such as, "I have a body (or soul)," predicated on an I capable of possession of some it.
In a whole-brain state, I, me, or myself are language metaphors–that is, words created to allow for thinking/speaking in languages based on subjects and verbs, themselves rooted in concepts of cause and effect. In this type of language, every observed action, represented by verbs, must have a causal subject, such as, I, in order to make a complete sentence.
Consequently, when thought patterns are language based, rather than structured by images, and one perceives personal action, e.g., moving one's hand, then he needs a subject for the verb move; hence an I moved my hand.
So far, no problem; one has simply used available language (a left brain capacity) to acknowledge a group of perceptions. But the mental stage is set for a consequential illusion whenever one wishes to remain physically present but deny or cloak responsibility (be the cause) of an action–that is, to deceive another, to pretend not to be an actual cause.
For example, if a child does something unacceptable-to-mother, say, an aggressive act, and wants to remain acceptable-to-her, or to avoid possible punishment, then deception becomes feasible. If he cannot physically hide and thus protect himself, then he may try to mentally hide, as in, trying verbal denial. "I didn't do it," or, "I didn't mean to." In other words, "not me," or, "I'm not responsible."
We may easily observe (hear) such a self-protective verbal move in hindsight, or from an adult perspective. But less easily can we see the mental trick required for making such a verbal deception, namely, the creation of an I as separable from the obvious action, an entity to be innocent of the unacceptable action, a one who apparently did not do what was obviously done.
Such a functional use of language is easily understandable for a child with strong survival instincts (pleasure versus pain, in case punishment might be forthcoming, or acceptance versus rejection in any case), especially one with emerging capacity for expanding consciousness. In natural quest of good milk, motherly protection, affection, love, or other services, one may smartly try to deceive his/her mother–as with non-verbal smiles to cloak unacceptable aggression, or verbal defenses, such as, "I didn't do it."
Point: Use of physical and/or mental ruses, such as smiles or verbal deceptions, in service of survival instincts, as in, trying to "fool mother," is both natural and understandable; but problems begin when pragmatic "fooling mother," et al, phases into dangerous "fooling oneself"–that is, when a functional, language based, I, as needed for verbal deceptions, is mentally solidified into an actual it–a thing, as it were, existing as a separable entity somewhere ("everything's gotta be somewhere") in one's body or head.
In psychological language, this is the beginning of the psychic phenomenon, repression/projection. "It (an action) was not I" who apparently did it. "I am," in effect, a separable "innocent bystander." Or, as may later be explained in religious concepts, "The devil (bad one) made me (good one) do it."
In summary: Self-repression and I-creation are concurrent psychic events, made possible by expanding consciousness–or, perhaps, the very substance and nature of con-sciousness itself.
Perhaps natural awareness, as evidenced in all creatures (higher life forms), or "sciousness," we might say, creating a descriptive word, can only phase into or become con (meaning, with) sciousness (knowledge) with the concomitant creation of a fictional I, itself only possible with the use of left brain language.
I suspect this to be true, and that all-too-familiar human states of self-consciousness, accompanied by psychological "feelings" of shame or guilt, are unnatural consequences of falling into beliefs in a real I versus a language convenient subject–that is, of actually having a real self to be conscious of.
This is evidenced by the apparent fact that animals and as yet unrepressed children do not appear to be self-conscious or to feel guilt or shame about their emotions or actions.
OVERVIEW OF MY PERSPECTIVES
1. Instincts: Self-survival and its enhancement; and self-replication to its maximum.
Instincts are embodied ("engened"), existing below levels of conscious awareness. Embodied instincts are mediated to personal awareness via "wants" or blind desires ("wanting what we want when we want it").
2. Creativity: Basic mode of instinct activation in world outside of body; how genes "express" themselves in action.
"World making" is shaping circumstances (materials, resources, people), so as to maximize genetic satisfactions; making spaces/places/things to fit sense satisfactions ("pleasures"). "World making" is translating "wants" into forms/shapes for creating comfort and enhancing pleasures.
3. Whole-brain functioning: With right and left hemispheres cooperatively activated together, each performing its innate functions, we exercise natural creativity. Two-part brains have evolved, I surmise, for mediating and maximizing creative success in obtaining instinct satisfactions.
4. Initially, there is no self as such, that is, sense of individual existence separate and apart from the perceived world. Mother, for example, who is the major "world" of an infant's awareness, is only perceived (as best we can tell) as an extension of his/her yet unrecognized "self"–that is, at first "I" and "world" are essentially the same. There is no "I" and "it." All is, in effect, "I" or "me."
Functionally, mother/world exists only as material and resources for "creating the world." All that is perceived, we might say, is "Yes" to creative world making.
5. But paradise is usually short lived: Eden, the Garden of Pleasure, into which we are all born, all too soon turns out to have Exist doors close at hand.
Invitations to exodus appear quickly, as soon as "they" begin to dress us in blue or pink, that is, when obvious physical gender differences, unrecognized and irrelevant by infants, become primary modes of worldly education, "instructing," as it were, penised ones in who-to-be, distinguished from vaginaed ones with contrasting teaching and permissions.
Boys, for example, are typically educated to "be strong," not "sissy," tough and unemotional; girls, in contrast, to "be sensitive," caring, and emotional, etc.
Soon too, "potty training" along with other forms of worldly "no-saying" appear in a growing child's previously "yes only" world. Seeds and circumstances for individuation, I versus it, are beginning to sprout. "No," we might say, in the presence of previous all "yeses," sets the stage for creation of self.
6. Self-creation: Prohibitions ("no-saying") in the midst of creative world-making set the stage for psychic events of self-making, that is, shaping one's whole-brained creative capacities into ever more functional forms in accord with individual capacities and personal bents--"bending," we might say, in ways which maximize pleasures and minimize pains, primarily aimed at first in getting/keeping favor with powers-that-be our major access to world resources (mother first, then father, siblings, etc.).
"Selfing"–that is, exercising inherited capacities to maximize individual advantages, begins as a participle (even before language is possible), naming a personal process, not an entity (a noun). Confronted with prohibitions (boundaries, borders, and external limitations), creative world making by an as yet undifferentiated self, "process-selfing" is invited to expanded attention to individual differences, that is, a sense of "self" as distinguished from "them," an "I" among "its."
7. Self, brain, and gender: In the beginning, as self-making and world-making start to divide, that is, individuation or recognition of separate existence, whole brain functioning is yet intact and operative. Quickly, however, influences of blue or pink–that is, social and genetic forces aimed at or rooted in gender differences become operative, setting up, as it were, previously undifferentiated children to focus on using gender-distinguished capacities for world/self creations.
Selfing, which begins as whole-brained creativity, is consequently invited to more often use hemispheric based capacities best adapted to gender differences. As it turns out, left brain capacities are more adaptable to male-identified and assigned activities, while right hemisphere abilities serve feminine type functions.
So far, so good, insofar as natural whole-brain creativity is concerned. A child simply uses whatever works best in creating his/her world and self. When right brain abilities serve better, they are used; when left brain based functions are more effective, they are called into play. And, creatively, easy, flowing coordination between both brain hemispheres, as is the order of while-brain "thinking," is regularly activated.
8. Repression: Ideally, with time and physical development as human capacities naturally increase, we would simply advance in abilities and skills in world/self creation–that is, escalate degrees of instinctual satisfactions utilizing maturing brain hemispheres and higher degrees of consciousness.
Unfortunately, such ideals seem to be immensely rare, if ever, and in most every child's development a significant, life-changing process commonly begins as natural selfing phases into a self.
Previously, individual human embodied collections of unique capacities, living in communities with each other, existed as though (note metaphor) they were selves, but were/are literally (no metaphor) en-skinned selfing processes. Others might view such a whole-brained, creative creature as "a self" (noun), but I theorize that before repression begins an individual has no sense-of-self as an entity residing in "his" or "her" body.
In principle, in this perspective, whole-brained persons are selfing, but have no self. Each individual is a lively, operative process continually responding to perceived reality in increasingly more creative ways; but, I speculate, such persons do not consciously think of themselves as an entity, such as, a self, mind, soul, ego, or even and I or me.
The creation of an analog "I," as might exist in one's skin, as religions commonly conceive of a soul in one's body, awaits, I posit, beginning repression in service of coping in the world.
Overall, repression involves squelching, even attempting to negate certain inherited capacities, such as, desire, in Eastern religions, or lust in Western religions, all in quest of communal acceptance, beginning with mother, family, friends, community, etc. Instead of embracing/becoming inherited, unique capacities, whole-brainedly creative, individuals, one may try to modify selfing by suppressing some of what is and being what is not, that is, creating an entity which conforms more acceptably with outside expectations of others in community.
Emerging capacities for imagination and consciousness may be perverted from creative, natural selfing concerns into creating an unreal "self" which may work better in quest of other-affirmation (itself essential for selfing in company of others).
Gender enters quickly into the picture as self-creation is formed along male/female lines, that is, penised ones trying to be male only ("big boys" who "don't cry," for example), and vaginaed ones to be only female ("sugar and spice and all things nice"). On brain levels of inherited human capacities, this division and identification typically begins with boys and left brains, girls with right.
In practice this move from human selfing into gender-based selves is facilitated by boys repressing right brain capacities and focusing on, developing and identifying themselves with left brain abilities, while girls typically remain essentially right brained (as we all begin) and avoid attentive development of their left brain capacities.
Overall, I observe, males are far more diligent in what amounts to splitting our whole selves into left brain identification, while females tend to remain more whole-brained, less divided within themselves.
WHOLE BRAIN THINKING
Whole brain thinking discriminates sharply, yet without judgment–"innocently," as it were, with discernment but without shame, like Adam and Eve in Eden, "naked and not ashamed."
Left brainers, however, discriminate crudely–based on consciously known "facts" which are always limited, and jump to conclusions involving unconscious judgments of right/wrong, which later become concepts, principles, and objective ethics, as, for example, executed in decisions of guilt or innocence based on impersonal rules/laws, regardless of circumstances, including personal feelings or motives.
Right brainers' "ethics (objective conclusions)" are literally a misnomer, in that their decisions are mostly subjective (as seen by the personal subject vs. some impersonal law)–that is, "situational" rather than "regardless."
Summary: Judgments based on objective principles or laws which ignore or disregard subjective factors, such as, overall circumstances, personal motives, etc., are the consequence of left brain type thinking.
Sharp, holistic discernments and decisions which consider all available data (of body as well as mind, "feelings" as well as "facts") are subjective, that is, resulting from right brain thinking tempered with left brain reasoning.
LEFT BRAIN THINKING
Left brain thinking focuses on entities, discrete things, this's versus that's–that is, mental "objects" which can be named, held in conscious mind space, lined up in order, and compared one against the others, even formed into complex concepts which become the basis for rules, principles, or seemingly objective truths existing independently of any one's perceptions.
Names and language, symbols of real experience, are consequently the major mental tools useful in successful focused left brain type endeavors.
Left brain thinking is, in geometric metaphors, linear rather than circular, in lines, not circles, and certainly two dimensional rather than three (as spherical type right brain thinking). This type of mental activity is sequential, that is, formed from discrete bits of data lined up in order, with one item of thought following another, as though on a train track.
The data itself, as entertained, weighed, and organized in left brain thinking, is conceptual rather than imaged, that is, formed and held-in-mind with words and concepts, as contrasted with pictures and other types of images used in right brain thinking.
Its building blocks are not bodily sensations, emotions, or desires, but rather discrete bits of mental data, often called "facts," and inevitably formed by words and concepts, that is, language based. Consequently, left brain thinking is easily (and erroneously) seen as objective rather than subjective (like right brain thinking). It is also "scientific" in the sense of invalid unless it can be repeated or externally substantiated, "proven," as we like to say, by others or objective experiments.
In speed comparisons, left brain thinking is relatively slow, plodding along, as it were, weighing and lining up discrete bits of language based data in linear fashion, "logically," we left brainers like to think, or "reasonably," so that it "makes sense" rather than "just being how I feel" or "would like to think."
THINKING AND LANGUAGE
Left brain type "thinking" (name for mental activity) is rooted in and predicated on words and verbal language–that is, symbolic mental representations, metaphors, we might later call them. Words represent discrete mental entities (contained perceptions), capable of being associated with certain sounds (pronunciations) and/or written letters (visually shaped scratches).
Most basically, words are names (nouns) representing simple perceptions, like seeing a tree, and complex perceptions, such as, events made up of things (objects) and/or people, and somehow held in mind space ("re-membered"). Such perceptions require combinations of words (names and verbs) in order to make "sentences"–that is, complex language forms useful for metaphoring (standing for) complex perceptions. As such, language (rooted in Broca's area of the left brain), allows an easy translation from awareness ("knowing" or "sciousness") to con or with-knowing, that is, con-sciousness.
And such con-sciousness thereafter becomes the basis for logical, language-based ideas of a seemingly separable entity, an "it" called "self," capable of "having" knowing, reduced for sake of language from an experiential adverb to a mentally holdable noun–namely, knowledge.
A whole-brained person is inherently capable of experiential "knowing," a human capacity vital for instinct satisfactions; but splitting (repression/projection) is necessary before one can fall into illusions of actually "having" (possessing) "knowledge" as a noun–that is, beyond the use of nouns as language entities useful in thinking, communicating, or writing in any given language.
Before I can "have knowledge" other than as a language convenience, I must have created an "I" (an entity) capable of possession–that is, fallen into a split-brain condition, as occurs when practical "fooling others" has phased into "fooling myself" as well. Or, when repression/projection has become my way of coping with the world–that is, trying to enhance genetic survival.
I amplify the nature of left brain, language-based con-scious "thinking," a Johnny-Come-Lately on the stage of human evolution, in order to point toward a far older, greater, and more complex form of right brain "thinking" based in images rather than words, evolved and existing in practice long before language and writing made recordable history possible.
Because the word "thinking" (mental activity) has commonly been confiscated by those (mostly men) who traffic in left brain type mental activity, the word "feeling" is commonly taken for what might more accurately be called "right brain thinking." Both left and right brain type "thinking" (mental activity) stem from awareness and capacity for holding perceptions in metaphored "mind space"; but whereas left brain type thinking is done with words and ideas (language based images), and older right brain thinking is formed with sense-based images–that is, mental "holdings" shaped (constructed) from sense-experience (sights, sounds, smells, etc.,) rather than word-experiences, or, to use a visual (single sense) metaphor, left brain thinking is based on "mental images"–things "seen" in mind's eye, while right brain mental activity is done with "physical images," perceptions of "head-eyes" plus "nose 'eyes'," "ear-'eyes'," tongue 'eyes'," etc.–that is, re-callable data from other sense perceptions.
In summary: There are two major and theoretically distinguishable types of mental activity, one, based in left brain language, is typically called "thinking," while the other, emerging from right brain experience, is mostly called "feeling." Both are rooted in awareness, perceptions, and human capacities for "holding" or retaining stopped-down "awarenesses" in mind space–that is, "re-membered" or subject-to-recall later.
But the major difference is that left brain holdings are structured by language–words and ideas, while right brain knowledge (remembered perceptions) is shaped by bodily perceptions (sense experiences) rather than mental concepts.
Right brain "knowing" (participle) is, in effect, lively and constantly changing, unlike left brain concepts which are static, even dead in comparison.
(Note: "Adam knew Eve, and she conceived.")
NATURAL LEFT BRAIN THINKING
I. Pre-language thinking
– This versus that; personally distinguished perceptions; knowledge that this and that are inherently different; that cannot be this.
– This and that are any sense discernments: sight, sound, smell, taste; for example, "mother" is not "father," even without any names for either.
– Colloquially, this knowledge is simple distinctions in personal perceptions.
II. Language-based thinking
– Names, the basic elements of language, are verbal (and/or written) symbols of distinguished perceptions, e.g., tree versus dog, Bill versus Sue, etc.
– Concepts are names for combined or complex mental abstractions, that is, symbolized symbols, or second level names for more than one perception, for example, numbers. There is no such thing as one or two or three, but each is a concept representing singular vision; two is double vision, etc. Time is another concept, based on the primary concept of numbers and other perceptions of change.
– Once a concept is created in one's mind (left brain), especially when shared with others and/or written, then its mental use is the same as simple names, that is, mentally firm, not subject to destruction without serious psychic consequences ("craziness"). For example, 1 + 1 = 2, a complex concept, is, for left brain thinking, the same as tree is not dog, etc.
But the relevant factor here is recognizing the crucial nature of these recognized differences, as in the "fact" that one and one always and only make two; or, left is one perceived direction, right is another, and right cannot be the same as left, or vice versa. Up, another perception, is opposite from down, and in left brain type thinking the words are not interchangeable. What is up cannot be down, and vice versa.
From the perspective of grammar, simple names are "ceptions," but concepts are literally con (with) ceptions, that is, "held ceptions" melded together into complex combinations.
Left brain thinking is "making sense" of discordant right brain data, e.g., a cacophony of sounds or conflicting "voices," as from mother and instinctive desires.
Left brain is the evolved "tool" or means of self-identification, individuation, that is, discerning "I" from "it (including other I's)." But when individuation is curtailed via brain splitting (identifying with left or right), right brain "voices" and other conflicting perceptions are left, as it were, "free floating," as hallucinations for schizophrenics, gods for religious folk, and mother-messages for ordinary persons.
WORDS AND KNOWLEDGE
Thinking involves mental ideas capable of being shaped into oral and/or written language–that is, contained in discrete entities in mind space, such as, names and sentences formed with verbs and other language forms.
But this type of language-based mental activity, rooted in the Broca's area of the left brain, that is, consciously word-able concepts, is but a small part of normal creative thinking, itself easily and often perverted into a mental/verbal device aimed at avoiding, preventing, or replacing natural mind activity.
By far, the greater wealth of "thinking" exists and operates before, below, or apart from that based in left brain language, speech, and sentence-type sequential logic, namely, what can be named, written, and/or told, and is commonly confused with natural thinking, indeed, mistakenly taken as all that "thinking" is.
This vast arena of personal "knowledge" may be summarized as "non-verbal thinking," in order to note its major distinction from common definitions of knowledge and thinking. Not-verbal points toward or represents such complex mental acts as facial recognition, which are obviously operative in babies long before language and names become possible. In adults, this "non-verbal" knowledge may be expressed when one honestly reports, "I know your face, but I can't remember your name," that is, I have non-verbal thinking which I can't bring into language just now.
Such "face knowledge" is but one small arena of extensive natural thinking which may take place outside or separate from words, names, etc. Other forms of non-verbal thinking are represented in language with such slippery and hard-to-define (in words) terms and phrases as: intuition, ESP, "gut feelings," "know in my heart (or bones)–even if it doesn't make sense" (meaning explainable with defined words).
But more commonly non-verbal thinking is represented with other sense-based terms apart from vision (as in, facial recognition), such as, sound, smell, taste, etc. For example, we may honestly think in terms of hearing "memories" or sound ("ear") knowledge (as in music). "I know your voice, but can't remember your name." Or, "I know that smell... but don't have a name for it."
Other phrases like "an ear for music, "knowing in my heart," or "just feel like..." may often be inadequate or even futile attempts to get non-verbal thinking into the verbal arena where communication with others is understandably easier.
LANGUAGE AND THINKING
Language is a mental capacity rooted in the Broca's Area of the left brain, which allows for symbolizing perceptions in verbal and written form. Primal language begins with non-verbal sounds–distinct guttural noises, sighs, grunts, etc., later formulated into words which become the basis of ideas or concepts representing complex combinations of perceptions ("experiences").
Basically, nouns or names represent single sense perceptions, such as seeing a "tree," and verbs (action words) which allow for symbolizing expanded experiences, such as, sight and sound, e.g., "I hear (verb) a bird (noun) singing."
Words (nouns, verbs, etc.) are verbal images, comparable to pictures for sight, sounds for hearing, odors for smell–that is, distinct units of perception which can be held in mind space over a period of time, and hence become the subjects of memory.
A name, representing a single sense perception, or a thought (idea), standing for a combination of perceptions, is a left brain image, more mentally complex but not unlike a right or lower brain based perception, such as, music or pleasure. "Thinking" is to left brain based language, as "feeling" is to right or lower brain (amygdala) based "emotions." We "think" in language; we "emote" in feelings. Words and ideas are to activation of left brain capacities, as sensations and emotions are to perceptions based in other parts of the brain.
Apex of evolution = maximum images from all levels of perception: 1) held in consciousness; 2) symbolized in language; 3) mediated in world via "willing" = human choose-ability (as limited as it is).
Advantage of left brain language, insofar as personal thinking is concerned–apart from utility in communicating with others, is relative ease of mentally manipulating words, in comparison with difficulty of managing (willing and choosing) all other types of images.
Words and language--ideas, are essentially secondary images, in that they are all rooted in bodily (right brain) perceptions which have already been "grasped" or translated into held images (e.g., facial memory). But when "mother" (name) is added to sight/smell/feel images, as distinguished from "daddy" or any other person, a baby can more quickly "think" about how to respond. A name, in effect, makes decision making easier, because it is easier to mentally manipulate.
Secondary means it is possible to have names without personal images they might represent, or vice versa, to have powerful images with no name for them; that is, to be very "smart" intellectually (with many known words/ideas with no personal perceptions ("experience") behind them; or conversely, to have massive "body knowledge" (unnamed images based on personal experience, yet without any mental symbols (words) to represent them (e.g., head smart versus street wise).
Secondary symbols ("book learning"), verbal knowledge, is much easier to acquire (and to demonstrate to others) than body knowledge (rooted in non-verbal images). Consequently, it is easier to appear to be smart–both to others as well as to one's self-constructed ego, by acquiring and multiplying language symbols (e.g., world facts, which are also more easily displayed to others) ("making them think you're smart"), than to risk embracing bodily capacities (e.g., sexual instincts) which are often suppressed in society.
NAMES AND MEMORIES
Stories, for example, are easier to recall than facts, because of more powerfully packed non-verbal "feeling" images formed from perceiving an event versus left brain memorizing of abstract "facts." The same, obviously, is true of faces and names. "I remember your face, but I can't recall your name" is a common experience, rarely if ever reversed, as in, "I recall your name, but I can't remember how you look."
But in spite of power and accuracy differences, any image from any level of perception, is easier to hold in mind space, subject to later conscious recall, if it has been named–that is, secondarily symbolized with left brain language. I theorize this to be true because the very process of "forcing" or translating a primary bodily perception into a left brain mental image must activate a greater number of brain cells, hence creating an expanded mental entity for later resurrection into consciousness.
Although experiential knowledge is obviously obtained with any type of physical perception, e.g., that "fire burns" after experiencing pain of contact, even before we know any words for such an event, we commonly limit concepts of "learning" to that which is named and held in awareness with left brain language (mental "pictures"), for instance, facts memorized in school or beliefs acquired at church (in religion).
"Smart people" are those who hold greater amounts of "intellectual" information–the type "learned" at school and/or from reading. "Ignorant people" are "uneducated" in "book learning," or so goes a common concept.
Relevant here is seeing beyond this familiar notion, and on toward recognizing the vastly greater arena of physical "learning," with or without names and language to represent it in left brain mind space–perhaps pointed at in accepted distinctions between knowledge and wisdom or school smart and street wise.
IMAGINATION AND NATURAL THINKING
All thinking is done in images distilled from perceptions on all levels from amygdala knowledge to left brain concepts. Consequently, it is accurate to say that thinking is "imaginal," done with subjective images rather than objective reality. But the concept of non-reality based on imagination, the kind we say is "all in your head"–as though real thinking were not, is valid for reference to images created in left brain language with no apparent bodily images to back them up.
This type of left brain imagery can be invaluable in stage acting, as well as everyday deceptions essential for social survival, plus keeping the wheels of civilization oiled for us all. Unfortunately, such imagination can also become an all-too-handy escape from becoming/being ourselves in community, where personal life ordinarily unfolds.
LEFT BRAIN KNOWLEDGE
Left brain knowledge, in distinction from right brain wisdom, is formed from discrete bits of nameable data, wordable information, which may be acquired externally, as from books, education, or being told by others.
As such, left brain knowledge (noun), often acquired from outside oneself, is externally supportable, that is, verifiable by others. In fact, before such knowledge is truly legitimate it needs to be affirmed by others in order to be confidently held by oneself. It needs, that is, to be "objectively" provable, as by experiment or confirmation by "independent investigators." At the very least left brain information needs to be statistically probable.
Such knowledge may, of course, be personally acquired by processes of experimentation, reason and sense-making, like building a mental pyramid from blocks of data fitted together "logically" and culminating in an intellectual "point"–conclusion, concept, fact, or "truth." But even when left brain type knowledge is self made, and capable of being worded, written, explained, and given to others, it typically needs external verification before being confidently "believed in."
Again, in sharp contrast, right brain wisdom is self-authenticating–that is, may be confidently held without any external verification or "logical reasons."
Overall, in spite of quasi-confidence of "well educated" left brainers, such word based knowledge is often far more limited than right brain "impressions" or "emotions" based on experiential data alone. Dedicated left brainers may "look smarter" at first, but often turn out to "be dumber" (in error) in larger contexts of time and relationships.
RIGHT BRAIN THINKING
Right brain thinking is holistic rather than entity oriented. As though one existed at the center of a sphere (the world), right brain thinking registers perceptions from all directions–up/down, right/left, etc., attentively, unfocused, on the big picture–overall patterns, the warp and woof of the colorful universe as perceived by humans.
Words and language, consequently, given this vastly different "way of seeing things"–that is, responding to multiple versus single perceptions, are relatively irrelevant to "first hand" right brain thinking, which traffics in seeing rather than collecting sights, events and processes, relationships, rather than specific elements which comprise complex collections of sense-based stimuli, products more of body than mind, of "feeling" than "thinking."
Right brain thinking is like being in the center of a sphere, with all senses perceiving stimuli from all directions, each bit of data, each sight, sound, and smell, being imaged and correlated into a random whole resulting in still presence, pregnant with information and leading to relatively spontaneous talk and/or decisions.
In two dimensions, right brain thinking may be seen as circular versus linear, that is, perceiving sense-based messages from all 360 degree directions. When such thinking is translated into language and/or conversation it may be viewed by left brain, sequential thinkers as chaotic, that is, without a point, jumping around easily from one perception and/or memory to another, with no apparent pattern of purpose, willy nilly, as it were, words and ideas whose relevance is either unrevealed or absent.
Any subject, for example, either in the privacy of a right brainer's mind or voiced in conversation with others, can be–and often will be–changed in any instant, again, without apparent reason.
When decisions ensue, either about mental conclusions or outside actions–summary ideas or what-to-do's–they too appear to be spontaneous, and often, at least from left brain perspectives, "without rhyme or reason," especially the latter.
Right brain thinking deals with emotional images associated with words (e.g., love, mother, corpses, devil, etc.), along with sounds or intonations of a speaker. In either case, literally, dictionary (left brain) meanings are relatively incidental to a right brainer, both in speaking and listening.
The same is true with metaphorical use of language–that is, using a specific word for implied meanings beyond common definitions. Hence, when right brainers are reading or listening, they tend to be very concrete in their understanding, and may be easily confused (or disinterested) both in abstract concepts as well as subtle implications (e.g., irony) not conveyed by emotionally related voice intonations.
Consequently, if a left brainer wishes to be understood by a right brainer, he will mainly use concrete terms, avoid subtle word plays (metaphorical meanings), and stay away from abstract concepts ("forest talk") entirely.
RIGHT BRAIN WISDOM
I choose the word wisdom for what many right brainers "just know without being told"–as though inherited or "in their bones," etc. Elsewhere, I have called such dark knowledge in right brain females "Sophie's Wisdom." Or, with a play on words, right brain "wisdom" is like "knowing without knowledge," that is, participle experience without noun subjects. If pressed for "how they know" what they apparently do, right brainer's may truthfully answer: "I don't know; it just came to me."
As such, and on analysis, right brain wisdom is, I conclude, an integrated combination of:
1) Instincts (genetic directives or "gene knowledge" rooted in three primary, pre-conscious instincts for selfing, community, and self replication); 2) Amygdala "learning (pre-language experience,)" beginning in the womb and best named as "emotional" rather than "factual"; 3) Early family experience (before age 3) which is shaped into habitual patterns of coping (unconscious survival modes, such as, "being good (in my case)" or "pleasing others vs. self"; 4) Current sensations perceived from all directions, as though one were in the center of a sphere with stimuli constantly being registered from both the outside and inside world via 5 senses plus inner bodily reactions ("sensitivity" to outside and inside worlds).
Vague names for right brain wisdom include: ESP, "feelings," impressions, gut knowledge (or "in my bones"), or "something told me."
Overall, right brain wisdom is non-verbal, existing as "knowledge-without-words," or, literally, as knowing (participle) without knowledge (noun). Almost always it is more holistic, taking in more actual data than always limited left brain logic (even without reasons), and in the long run may be far "smarter" insofar as human values (not technological or business facts) are concerned. Even a right brainer's short time "wrongs" often turn out to be "right" in the long run.
Negatively speaking, right brain wisdom is not necessarily logical, reasonable, or provable, as contrasted with left brain knowledge which must "make sense." It may not be possible to consciously explain right brain wisdom to a left brainer who truly needs verbal clarification. "Right" to a right brainer is best stated as "feels right," even if it doesn't "make sense" as viewed from left brain perspectives.
Typically a right brainer's "explanations," as often needed by left brainers, though not for themselves, are more like rationalizations than logical reasons–that is, "made up" answers to justify what may be known entirely without any conscious reasons.
RIGHT BRAIN "THINKING"
I put thinking in quotes to imply my uncommon use of the term. Most males, as best I can tell, Jaynes included, either do not recognize right brain expressions as "thinking," or else think it does not occur. Jaynes statement, for example, that before the breakdown in bicameral mind "people were not thinking," points toward this common belief.
But I conclude differently; I think that both brain halves are engaged in "mental activity," only in distinctly different forms/ways. Left brain oriented men, like Freud, Jaynes, and myself (and, I observe, most other men also) typically see our left brain, language based type mental activity as "thinking," but dismiss female type mental activity, which I identify with right brain capacities, as "just being emotional," that is, "not thinking."
I think this is an error, typical of us who have become self identified with our left hemisphere and consequently repressive of right brain "thinking" which is certainly not like our own, and more easily named as "just feeling" in contrast with "being reasonable."
In either case, here is what I now understand right brain mental activity, "thinking" in a way uncommon with most men, to be like:
– First of all, as seen in verbal expressions and/or physical actions, right brain "thinking" is immensely fast, far quicker than sequential, language-based left brain thinking–so fast as to be easily confused with "automatic," "spontaneous," or mere "reaction" without any "thinking" at all. As metaphors, these terms may be accurate, that is, right brain thinking is like (appears as) automatic, or a blind "reaction" as contrasted with a reasoned "response." Easily Jaynes and most other left brain thinkers may confuse (my conclusion) speedy right brain mental activity as "not thinking" at all.
– Right brain mental activity is based on a wealth of "genetic wisdom," that is, inherited "knowledge" centered on self-survival, community-connections, and self-replication, embodied and activated long before human languages evolved, I think, in its service. Such "genetic wisdom" is augmented by what I call "amygdala learning"–that is, deep brain "emotional" experience, quickly supplemented after birth with massive amounts of sense data and early circumstantial learning. This immense reservoir of information exists like a computer data base, subject to being instantaneously tapped, as when one types in a word in Google.
The speed with which Google returns "answers" may indeed appear as "spontaneous," "automatic" or "without thinking," when in fact it is quick connection between a present stimulus (in this case, a word or question) and a vast, unseen, collection of prior information.
This, I conclude, is what right brain "thinking" is like (note metaphor), in sharp contrast with left brain mental activity rooted in language and discrete bits of acquired information–that is, exceptionally fast rather than notably slow (as men tend to "think").
– Much right brain "thinking" is pre-language based, that is, acquired before language becomes possible, and is primarily existent as un-languaged ("unnamed" or not-worded) information, as in: facial recognition (mother versus others); smell associations; emotional recollections; sound pleasures; habituated experience (such as, personal patterns, like dominant or submissive). Deepest reservoirs of right brain thinking ("data base" in computer language), universal genetic wisdom, are instincts mediated into personal awareness via "wants" (desires), "what I feel like saying or doing" (pleasure versus pain)," and "emotional" responses, often called "intuition" or "gut feelings."
– Right brain thinking is "selfing (instinct #1)" oriented below/before/without a sense-of-self, as reflected in an analog "I" which is dependent on or existent in left brain consciousness.
– Freud's "unconscious mind"–an immensely novel and useful concept when he introduced it, may have been his language creation for naming this as then/yet unrecognized phenomenon of "right brain thinking." Perhaps the notion of an "unconscious mind" (as yet unlocated anatomically) was/is a crude name for this dark reservoir of un-worded, even pre-language information most commonly "un-held" in left brain type consciousness. While conscious awareness was easily recognized, perhaps attaching an un to consciousness ("un-conscious") was a good name for this yet unrecognized reservoir of "genetic wisdom" as mediated to awareness via the right hemisphere of the brain.
With consciousness defined and understood as holding discrete bits of language-based data in metaphored "mind space," subject to being recalled in sequentially arranged words in reasonable order, dark, un-worded genetic wisdom might easily be crudely categorized as un (not) conscious.
– With similarly crude words, these different kinds of "thinking"–which I identify with left and right hemispheres of the brain, might be distinguished as "lighted" versus "dark," or, "objective" versus "subjective." Conscious thinking of the left brain, sequential order type, may indeed be seen as "lighted" in the face of far harder to reduce-to-language, comprehensive, right brain "thinking," more easily identified with absence of light.
And, since left brain type, language-based data is easily acquired from outside oneself (education, books, teachers, etc.) and is consequently verifiable by others as well as "scientific research," it may generally be thought of as "objective," while genetic wisdom, arising from within, as it were, may "objectively" be seen as "subjective," that is, "of-the-subject (person)."
– Freud's, Jaynes', and other typical male beliefs (limited knowledge) in this regard may be based in our maleness, that is, left brain, language-based, consciousness and self identification with an analog I, following their/our own brain split, as typical of males historically, and, as I observe, in boys yet today.
– Historical studies, like genealogical research and adopted children's parental curiosities, are, I think, all rooted in dark quests for accurate self-identification ("Who am I, really?"), and, especially in case of left brain identified males, an effort to support or find roots for present ideas/theories–that is, historical mirrors for reflecting dim, present repressions.
RIGHT BRAIN OVERALL
In largest perspective, lower brain stem based capacities, such as, genetic wisdom (inherited instincts), primal reactionary emotions, replication urges (including estrus knowledge), amygdala learning, are, I conclude, mediated to personal awareness via the right hemisphere of the brain. Even if not structurally located in the right hemisphere, their activation is limited to an embraced (not repressed) right brain; this plus powers generated thusly, e.g., of physical needs such as air, hunger, "desire" (wants), and sense perceptions.
A typical right brainer's characteristics include:
– Lack of distinct self identification.
– Self dispersed in images formed from sphere perspectives.
– Unconsciously activated selfing instincts.
– Consciousness consumed by instinct #2, connections, and thwarted efforts to harmonize, coordinate, beautify, control, make peaceable, perfect arrangements (shapes, matches).
– Primary agenda: to order, manage, control, harmonize, find safety and comfort in the midst of multiple, 3 dimensional perceptions they are constantly imaging.
In this powerful, continual, diligent-though-unconscious effort to tame, control, order and find personal safety/comfort/satisfaction in the midst of continually arising right brain perceptions, right brainers blindly embrace selfing instincts, and cloak diligent selfing (#1 instinct) with #2 activation, that is, major attention given to connection-related activities, such as, appearances (What They Think), "company," style (current group fads, ways of defining peer acceptance), harmonizing (keeping peace in all relationships), suppressing all aggression and socially disruptive male attributes (such as, overt sex).
– Repression of instinct #3, replication, in awareness, with corresponding projection onto males, and consequently being blindly caught up in unconscious seductions aimed at security (male possession), using sex for power without embracing inherent pleasures of natural sex, including female capacity for multiple orgasms.
– Organize stuff versus self; lacking left brain identification and its use in control of right brain perceptions, as in, prioritizing, reasoning, focusing (while holding other unrelated right brain perceptions at bay), right brainers typically compensate by exaggerated, often unrealistic, efforts at external control, as of things (dirt, dust, crumbs); people (children, spouse, unruly public). They may in effect seek internal "self control" via external "thing" control.
–Can't listen (receive information) comfortably, because caught up in coping with unordered personal knowledge.
–Acts of knowing ("being right") may cloak threats of ignorance (not knowing) inherent in their split with left brain capacities (information gathering, making facts, concepts, rules, etc.).
RIGHT BRAIN AND LANGUAGE
Emotional images are fleeting, powerful and difficult to translate into definitive language, especially by right brain persons more concerned with emotional expressions than word meanings; hence, superlatives like best/worse ("best food I've ever had"), always/never ("you never help me"), are more useful than definite matters like accurate time and dictionary definitions.
MOTHER NATURE'S WISDOM
RIGHT BRAIN ACTIVATION
Mother Nature's wisdom, that is, genetic directives related to survival and replication, are mediated to awareness on the way to volition (not conscious decisions) via desire ("wants"), moderated or guided by protective emotions (urges to "fight/flight") and, when accepted via volition, are enhanced/rewarded by pleasure (fun) on the way to culmination in ecstasy, as in physical orgasm, and/or spiritual transcendence.
Primal, unconscious desire is, in safe circumstances, actuated via volition, regularly culminating in creativity ("creative living") which is inherently satisfying and kept lively and creative, even invigorating and exciting, by continual awareness of ever-present, constantly changing unknowns–that is, to the human condition in the evolving world.
This state of natural aliveness, unhindered by personal repression, is characterized by whole brain unity–that is, right brain activation of Mother Nature's Wisdom (instinct direction) mediated in the world by left brain knowledge acquired by experience in the School of Hard Knocks (acquired personal discretion or "making sense").
In more traditional language, "whole brain" living is existing with "feeling" and "thinking" in harmonious activation, that is, being sensitively emotional and reasonable, moved by primal desires (right brain) mediated by left brain discretion, "wants" tempered by "good sense" without any loss or projection of their natural powers.
But repression changes all this by:
– Nipping natural desire in the bud, even identifying "wants" with evil, and making a virtue of squelching desire–especially when its name is "lust."
– Suppressing emotions, making a virtue of coolness.
– Stopping thinking; substituting beliefs for believing, thoughts of others for one's own.
– Repressing right brain capacities and creating gods (external images) for projecting personal powers lost to individual awareness; this is the genesis of religion in organized forms in the history of civilization as well as personal lives today.
– Assuming omniscient knowledge, symbolized in the bible as "fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil"–that is, falling into illusions of having "ultimate truth" or certain answers.
– Beginning of split between body and soul (self, mind, etc.), that is, illusions of disembodiment or personal existence apart from physicality.
– Splitting of brain, between left and right hemispheres, most commonly with males identifying with the left hemisphere capacities (words, language, etc.) and females with more primal right brain mediated capacities.
Consequent repression of dis-identified brain halves often reflects in unconscious projection of related powers, such as, men projecting "heart" (right brain capacities) onto women, with whom they/we later "fall in love" with, in blind quest of our own "missing parts."
Although we commonly think of "learning" as a conscious endeavor primarily aimed at acquiring outside information, like students at school, I think that our far greater and more important "education" begins at primal, even embryonic, stages of life, long before the advent of consciousness and language.
Such "learning" might be called body or experience knowledge, which occurs without words, teachers, or conscious awareness, but inevitably results from the nature of personal perceptions, beginning in the womb.
Furthermore, many of these significant, outside-of-language, below-consciousness, "lessons" take place and remain rooted in physical arenas, such as, the amygdala, lower brain stem, limbic system, and/or emotional capacities, plus other right brain based human knowing (e.g., "ear for music"), and of course our five senses, plus ESP.
Such primal learning is in the arena where personal perceptions (via senses) encounter stimuli from beyond one's skin, e.g., from contact with mother's womb walls, plus sounds from the outside world.
Specifically, learning focuses on harmony or disruption (pleasure/pain) initiated by encounters between inward instincts and outside stimuli, on what "feels good" or "bad" as perceptions are registered by sensory receptors in an infant's innate quest for survival and satisfaction. He or she begins soon after conception to "learn" about what works best or worst for instinct satisfaction–that is, how to, in effect, cope with the perceived world in quest of maximized survival. In summary, primal "learning" focuses on how can one may experience most pleasure and least pain in responding to given circumstances as perceived via bodily senses.
RIGHT BRAIN AND LANGUAGE
Emotional images are fleeting, powerful and difficult to translate into definitive language, especially by right brain persons more concerned with emotional expressions than word meanings; hence, superlatives like best/words, always/never ("you never help me") are more useful than definite matters like accurate time and dictionary definitions.
RIGHT BRAIN PARADOX
Paradoxically, right brainers who are dis-identified with left, end up having greater freedom to blindly use left brain reasoning capacities in service of their own right brain feelings/desires. Unfortunately, especially for left brain men, this use is primarily for rationalizing–that is, quickly coming up with quasi-logical reasons which on the surface support right brain "wants" in language likely to confuse left brainers.
I have read that "the right hemisphere has no equivalent to "no."
If so, this would imply that a true, confirmed right brainer is essentially, in effect, "saying yes" to all perceptions and possibilities, without the refining, tempering, discretion adding, prioritizing capacities inherent in "no saying" left brainers.
I can only imagine how chaotic this limited mode of thinking/coping would be...
YES AND NO
Right brain is all yes, no no–that is, open to all perceptions without negation of any. "No saying" is essentially a left brain function.
Adam introduced left brain thinking into Eve's all good garden when he bit the apple of right/wrong knowledge, that is, saying "no" to some previous yesses. But the original sin was not in left brain recognition of this's and that's, simple discrimination, with some fruit tasting better than others, but rather in assumed godhood for judging which was good or evil, that is, saying "no" to some perceptions as though Adam were god.
RIGHT BRAIN AND CONCEPTS
Words and concepts are the stock and trade of left brainers–but not so for those who identify themselves with right brain capacities. For them, holistic (spherical) perceptions, with words (language) perceived more like sounds comparable to any other sense–that is, as they strike the ear rather than as defined in a dictionary, are the order of the day.
Consequently, when a right brainer is confronted with word and language meanings, plus nuances of implications–as in, irony, humor, metaphors, etc., he or she is likely to either be confused or else entirely miss verbal subtleties which come naturally for left brainers. What a left brainer may take as "not listening" or "not paying attention to what I say," may in fact be rooted in this primary difference in the way words are perceived by opposing brain hemispheres–that is, not "ignoring" but literally "not getting" language nuances.
And so with many other language based concepts, such as, time, and its linear applications, plus space, and principles which are formed from specific bits of data made into concepts related to time and space.
For example, a male lamented in an old song, "Time means nothing to you, I wait and then, you're late again...." Although such left brainers are likely to take a right brainer's apparent ignoring of clock related appointments personally, as though they are "to him," analysis may reveal that this familiar situation is not about power ("making him wait") or even conscious "ignoring," as much as relative ignorance (inattention) to the concept of time itself. Caught up in other sense-related perceptions (e.g., emotions, appearances, desires) literally impersonal numbers (concepts) on a clock may be outside the sphere of a right brainer's attention.
And so with arranging activities within vaguely perceived concepts of time, such as, planning ahead, which requires focus on a variety of concepts, many of which are not sense related, as would be perceived by a right brainer. This limitation becomes particularly relevant when language based principles, another product of left brain reasoning, need to be applied. Prioritizing, that is, arranging complex "values" or "ethical principles," in the context of time (another left brain concept) is particularly problematic for right brainers who are far more attentive to immediate perceptions and "how I feel."
For example, a "relationship" is a complex combination of concept-based values and principles mostly existing in and subject to awareness via left brain type thinking. But "appearances," including clothing, furniture arrangement, facial makeup, crumbs on the floor, etc., may all be current perceptions of a right brainer, each of which "calls for" immediate response. Meanwhile, "relationships," as between parents and children or spouses and each other, may, in effect, be invisible (out of awareness) to a right brainer's sense perceptions. Consequently, "prioritizing" or weighing one against the other in immediate situations, and speaking/acting in accord with "which matters most," may become difficult if not impossible for one who is self identified with right brain capacities.
RIGHT BRAIN AND WORDS
As observed before, words and concepts are essentially left brain operations; right brainers hear words more as sounds, like other sensations, rather than as defined mental entities as left brainers do. Certainly they hear and use words, but in distinctly different ways from their usually male counterparts.
Overall, right brainers use words more for making and maintaining human connections than for literally conveying information, as is more typical of left brain speakers. When so, word meanings are relatively incidental in comparison to their utility in establishing, harmonizing, and keeping peaceful relationships with others.
On a personal level, right brainers use words and concepts for giving shape and form to right brain perceptions ("feelings"), rather than for weighing and comparing facts and ideas, as is more common for left brainers. When so, dictionary definitions of words are secondary to their ability to express the breadth and power of sensed perceptions, such as, emotions.
Consequently, because power-packed "feelings," as everyone knows, are notably difficult to reduce to words, right brainers typically take great liberties with comparative words. For example, when time comparisons are used, a strong, present "feeling" may be voiced in terms such as always and never ("You never do what I want," or, "You always disagree with me").
To a left brainer who is attentive to word meanings, such responses are, obviously, grossly overstated, especially if he does often try to please and/or agree. Very few, if any, things are always or never, literally speaking. Good left brain advice is: "Never say never."
But when a powerful right brain perception is seeking form in left brain language, extreme measurements may be called for; indeed, even the grandest of such time measurements may be inadequate for a right brainer's intended communication–which, unfortunately, left brain literalists seldom seem to understand. When a right brainer is upset, for example, a mere time-related always may not be "long enough" for saying what a right brainer actually "feels like."
Another major difference lies in the place and function of language itself as used in left and right brain thinking. Again, as previously noted, words and concepts are the fundamental elements structuring left brain thinking. Left brainers literally "think in words and ideas" while often trying hard to exclude typical right brain perceptions ("feelings").
In sharp contrast, right brainers, also as noted elsewhere, "think in images" rather than "in concepts." Words and ideas are hence secondary to "pictures (and other sense images)" in creative right brain thinking.
But because most current societies elevate and approve of left brain, concept oriented, education ("facts and figures") and communication, while ignoring, ever putting down on right brain, "emotional (or 'street')" knowledge, citizens caught up (as most of us are) in these commonly accepted judgments, must make adaptations.
Because the left brain mode of thinking is "in," we who use it rarely need to justify our accepted "way of thinking." But right brainers, in order to "fit in," and especially to communicate with the left brain world, must somehow translate, even justify, their thinking (which is often far more comprehensive, even wiser, than linear type left brain ideas) with left brain language usage.
The challenge begins with inherent limitations of literally defined words (as noted above), but extends to the arena of authentication of thinking itself–that is, need for outside verification of what one thinks. Left brain thinking, being more objective in the sense of based on objectively defined words and scientifically provable "facts,"–that is, subject to verification by "objective" others, literally needs such outside authentication before it has any real validity or can be accepted as "true."
In sharp contrast, right brain thinking, being more subjective in the sense of structured by inside "feelings (rather than outside 'facts')" which are inherently self-authenticating, needs no such external verification. A left brainer may, for example, properly "doubt what he thinks" until or if it can be "proven" externally; but right brainers may easily, even automatically, "know what I feel" and confidently assume it to be "right" without any outside authentication.
From this differing context, as though we come from different planets, right brainers, not needing "proof" for what they "know," but finding themselves in a left brain world which does, may smartly use language to help bridge the gap–first, in their own thinking if they are unsure of themselves, but mostly for justifying ("explaining") themselves to left brainers who need "good reasons" to support ideas and actions.
Consequently, on analysis, if not immediately apparent, right brainers typically use "reasons" and "logical thinking (quasi)" to support "feelings" and "spontaneous" decisions. In technical terms, they mainly rationalize–that is, cleverly create sensible-sounding reasons to substantiate what they deeply "know" without any outside justification. If personally insecure, they rationalize for their own benefit; but in communication with others they may cleverly "make up" reasons, even unconsciously, in order to be heard by left brain thinkers who need "sensible facts" to support any ideas or actions.
In summary, honest communication between left and right brainers is inherently challenging, given these contrasting ways in which we think and speak. Without understanding and compromise on the part of one or the other, literal co-munication may be literally impossible, unless, of course, love intervenes....
– Can't tell right brainers about their self because there is no defined core to speak to or respond from.
– Literal co-munnication, that is, real verbal intimacy between a left brainer and a right brainer is rarely possible because of a right brainer's undefined self. Right brainers often don't know "who I am," so cannot tell or converse about themselves clearly, Only left brainers are consistently interested in asking of themselves "Who am I really?" This existential question may seldom enter a right brainer's mind.
Left brainers may often ask, "Who am I?," but right brainers seldom do; rather they exist in their spherical universe, moved by stimuli from all directions, perceived, but seen as given.
– Right brainers want you as a part of themselves, but not as a separate one to meet.
– Right brainers can let you have all or none, but often cannot truly share as equals together.
– Right brainers have an undefined "I (self)" due to lack of left brain use where all definitions begin, including of oneself.
One consequence is difficulty in taking conscious, personal responsibility for one's words and/or actions (not to be confused with assuming a sacrificial stance as though "it's all my fault").
This difficulty may not be related to "being irresponsible," as left brainers may think (as might actually be true for them), but rather because without a defined (to some conscious degree) self, there is, in effect, no "one (distinguished I)" present to "take responsibility."
– To me, versus I do.
Another consequence of an undefined self is use of "...ed" language, that is, adding "ed" to verbs, indicating that actions are done "to" a right brainer, rather than experienced as one's personal emotions. For example, "I feel unloved (ignored, rejected, discounted, unappreciated, diminished," "patrionized," etc.).
Obviously such a speaker is talking about a personal feeling; but in each instance, at least as reflected in language used, such statements imply that the experience is an action of an outside person, that is, "being done to them" as distinguished from "experienced by them" or "felt within"– as might be personally expressed in such statements as, "I'm angry about your inattention to me," or, I'm jealous that you pay more attention to her than to me," or, "I feel fearful when you are not affirming me."
In extreme cases, diagnosable paranoia ("everyone is out to get me") is one expression of a completely undefined person who compensates by "taking everything personally." But even in average right brainers, who exist perceiving all stimuli personally, the feeling may be similar.
When, for example, an emotion is perceived (e.g., a loved one is inattentive), without a clear sense of oneself as a separate and defined "I," understandably the feeling-in-response is most evident in actions (inaction, in this example) of the loved one. Consequently "unloved" or "ignored"–the actions perceived, may be taken to be the source of the emotion as though "you are doing this to me, and I am only an "innocent (unemotional) bystander."
– Don't talk concepts–theories, analyses, principles, causes, with right brainers; all these are essentially left brain interests only. Talk "trees," not "forests," with right brainers.
– Actors, artists, poets, seers, oracles, preachers are basically right brainers because they are more open to what seems to "come to them," e.g., by inspiration or outside of oneself. Actors have directors/scripts; poets have muses; oracles have gods; preachers have "calls."
In common, all are moved from without versus as self movers. All this may be positive, but the down side is that each is vulnerable to negative influences, powers of others. For example, in extreme attention to outside forces one may become paranoid, believing that everything is to me and others are against me.
– Left brainers may take blame, even when not realistic, that is, "feel responsible" since they have a more defined sense of self. Right brainers project blame ("You made me feel....") or, conversely switch from "no fault" to "all my fault (total blame)," "can't do anything right"; but such assertions may be without substance, that is, even with sacrificial stances there may be no actual sense of personal responsibility due to lack of a defined "I."
– Right brainers "get involved" easily, may be naive, tend to believe whatever they hear/read (without proof or verification); are often vulnerable to words ("lines"), and consequently take delight in "romance" which may be without substance. This is evidenced in how totally absorbed a right brain actor may get involved in a role, or such a woman in seduction by a man, but not sexual by personal choice, as in, "fly me to the moon" romantic desires.
– Left brainers are more likely to function as though independent, separate, or loners (not needing others), while right brainers tend to avoid aloneness, act dependent, and love company.
– Right brainers tend to be more religious in practice (if not in beliefs), while left brainers tend toward skepticism, agnosticism, or atheism.
– Right brainers may escape self into company; connections are crucial, while left brainers often escape into isolation, fearing connections.
– Attempts to please right brainers predictably backfire in time after initial effectiveness, because they interfere with such hidden agendas as, wielding power by sacrifice or submission rather than overt dominance.
– Right brainers may fear self definition (as in answering, "Who am I?"). They want deeply to "keep all options open." But this stance of continual openness (not being "pinned down" with words and/or verbal commitments) may not be as much about overt freedom as fear of left brain type self definition.
– Difficulty in left brainer's asking and getting answers about right brainer's desires ("What do you want to do...," etc.) may not lie in conscious refusals to tell, as much as in the fact that those caught up in continual openness to all perceptions actually do not know ahead of time (a left brain concept) what they want. Also, they may need safety of complaining later more than risking responsibility for decisions now–that is, left brain activation in a current moment.
RIGHT BRAINER'S CHARACTERISTICS
– Live "in a world of their own," even in the midst of company–that is, in a private undefined world, fearful of actual, self-revealing intimacy, deeply caught up in instincts, cloaked by quasi-independence. They are moved mostly by pre-conscious directives, versus conscious choices, that is, "decides" by dark knowledge versus lighted personal awareness or conscious reasons.
– Don't ask right brainers "Why?," not because they have no reasons or left brainers may not truly need to know; but rather because they often don't consciously know why, as needed to answer a left brainer's asking.
– Right brainers have an un-defined self, resulting in unclear desires; unordered "insides" typically compensated for (or cloaked by) excessive external ordering in carefully selected arenas, such as, females and dirt/dust/crumbs and/or dishes in the washer, and males with organizing guns and sporting equipment and/or clothes in a drawer.
– Right brainers are often "very sociable" but without real intimacy; much "socializing," but with little depth.
– Although right brain knowledge, indeed, wisdom, may in fact be deeply personal, it is rarely recognized as such. More commonly "right brain wisdom" is attributed to: gods, muses, "voices," inspiration, and/or "just came to me."
– In contrast with left brainer's need for external verification and/or affirmation, as reflected in need to tell what they see/know in such oft unconscious quests, right brainers have no internal need to tell what they know, except for purposes of "making conversation" and/or keeping connections with others via talk rather than touch.
RIGHT BRAINER'S WORLD
Right brainers are moved by the unregulated forces of "feelings," without the benefit of left brain self and sense making capacities to mediate emotions with other worldly values. Existing openly (sphere metaphor) and receptively in the midst of constant stimuli from both their outside and inside worlds, without a defined sense-of-self (which requires left brain activation to accomplish), they are also vulnerable to being regularly overwhelmed by massive amounts of perceptions.
In a right brainer's "Yes-to-all-I-get" world, dangers related to lack of self-definition are compounded by limited left brain prioritizing abilities, as well as expanded consciousness made possible by sequential thinking (ability to hold and line up discrete bits of data for evaluation before speaking or acting and/or making decisions).
Emotions, for example, as we all know, are essentially willy nilly, coming and going, as it were, without apparent rhyme or reason, yet wielding significant forces over bodily movements and expressions ("You can't help how you feel"), and this without regard or even influence by other personal values.
This inherent "feeling" problem is compounded by the right brain mode of thinking in images rather than concepts. Left brain type thinking allows for, in effect, de-coding emotionally powered images into mentally containable concepts–taming, we might say, animal-like instincts for saner and safer presentation in civilized (social) worlds. This might be compared to capturing animals ("feelings") in the wild and placing them in social zoos.
But whereas left brainers automatically (by habit and self identification) put reins on "feelings" (and other bodily emotions) as they translate perceptions into conceptions, right brainers lack this socializing skill. Either they must use the psychic device of repression (which may be psychologically seen as depression), that is, denial of what they perceive and feel (not being personally present--"out to lunch," as it were, speaking/acting on automatic pilot with early learned modes of coping), or else risk relational dangers of uncontrolled emotional forces in public (like letting hungry animals out of their cages).
But even in the latter case, when right brainers "blow their stack," "have a fit" or an "unreasonable (literally) outburst," they face the additional challenge of translating dark right brain images (held emotional "pictures") into left brain language–all on the spur of a moment when un-worded "feelings" are rampantly active.
Trying to put powerful emotions into safe words is a considerable challenge in the best of circumstances; but when a right brainer is "about to burst" from long held anger or other unexpressed "feelings," this challenge must seem insurmountable. Giving vent to projected emotions (as in, blaming and/or cursing), or acting out, as in, having a "hissy fit," engaging in irrational abuse of anyone at hand, may seem like easier ways to find personal relief if not comfort.
Furthermore, one other psychic matter is relevant to a right brainer's challenges in bringing dark but powerful images into the light of social relationships, namely, the difference between awareness and consciousness. One significant offshoot of a left brainer's habitual focus on words and language as a means of coping with the world is expanded consciousness–that is, existing with-knowing as distinguished from, in effect, being-knowing, without mental space between self and knowledge.
When left brainers come to delineate self from world–that is, mentally individuate, they acquire the ability to separate their sense-of-self from what-they-perceive–that is, "I" from "it (in this case, personal perceptions)." Knowing–that is, the existential process of awareness (which we share with all living creatures), is transformed into knowledge. The lively participle is reduced in mind's eye to a frozen noun (knowing, a participle indicating process, is temporarily contained, as it were, in static knowledge (nouns).
Consequently, left brainers are with-sciousness (meaning of con-sciousness) and hence have a bit of mental space between themselves and their perceptions. It is this mental gap which allows awareness (or knowing) to be reduced to containable knowledge and hence consciousness. And consciousness, or knowing-what-one-knows, as contrasted with awareness or being-one's-knowing, lets one have mental room for "reasoning" or weighing options before speaking and/or acting.
Right brainers, however, moved by their un-decoded images formed from multiplied perceptions (from all directions, both outside and inside) may have greatly expanded awareness, yet their lack of self definition and identification with language concepts, leaves them limited in con-sciousness–that is, knowing reduced to holdable knowledge (participles to nouns). Consequently, their easily available options are: 1) Immediately express awareness in words/actions, or, 2) Repress knowing, and function/relate in learned modes of acting disconnected from instinctive awareness.
But since spontaneously expressed awareness (deep honesty) is rarely functional in society and in many relationships with others, right brainers may opt for the second choice most often, and only occasionally risk social rejections related to "outbursts" of emotional forces.
On the other hand: Implied advantages for left brainers in society and personal relationships--due to delineated selves, language-based thinking, and expanded consciousness, are, however, typically accompanied by limitations which right brainers may live without.
For instance, left brainers are often determined by dictates of reason and sequential, thinking-in-words–perhaps more conscious, but less aware, than their right brain counterparts–and, even more consequentially, without the warmth (heat?) and power of emotions (not to mention, intuitive wisdom) to ease cold pains often inherent when life's harsher realities are consciously faced rather than kept in the darkness of right brain living.
RIGHT BRAIN THINKING
The apparent black/white, automatic right/wrong world of right brainers, as viewed from left brain perspectives, may be mistakenly seen as "blindness," "not being aware," or necessarily judgmental (as would indeed be so for a typical left brainer).
More clearly such seemingly "reactionary stances" might be seen as right brain identified persons with closure to left brain reasoning–that is, perhaps sharp awareness reflecting in volition (spontaneous expressions/actions) rather than "open minded (including left brain reasoning)" decisions. (See my distinctions explained later.)
Such seemingly "black/white" reacting persons, with no awareness of "shades of gray," may literally be seeing all shades of gray as well as other colors and sense perceptions (be "fully aware"), but simply re-acting openly "without thinking" in the left brain mode, as in volition versus decision.
When inside genetic urges, such as, for aggression and/or pleasure, threaten one's identified sense of self, such as, "a good person," a right brainer may compensate by excessive focus on outside order of "things," such as, objects, clothing, crumbs, dust, or dirt.
Trying to not be our own right brain capacities–that is, tp deny and suppress them out of left brain consciousness (since they don't necessarily "make sense"), has several identifiable consequences:
– Negative judgments of those (mostly female) who continue to function in right brain modes.
– Caught up in unconscious rebellion against those who do, for sake of personal integrity.
– Erroneously identifying emotions with weakness; "being reasonable" better than "being emotional."
But since repression is not the same as negation, right brain suppressed males are left with relatively unconscious right brain capacities, such as, "feelings," etc, which continue to blindly operate and silently "call" for activation. Natural human desires for wholeness and presence (heaven here), and hence happiness are left thwarted outwardly (via repression) but remain inwardly alive, as left brainers are darkly moved to seek wholeness, even while outwardly worshiping at various thrones of concept idolatry (imaged gods, principles, and other left brain type concepts).
Two all-too-familiar modes of male coping typically ensue: 1) Outward, conscious, put downs (negative judgments) on all evidences of right brain activation in ourselves as well as seen in females and gay males; 2) Unconscious attractions reflecting primary quests for wholeness ("being our whole selves")–that is, trying to find our "missing half (right brain)" out there.
Since females more commonly personify right brain capacities, repressed males may unconsciously "fall in love" with blindly projected shadows of our "missing halves," erroneously believing they might be captured and kept "out there" in forms of women we "love."
Overall results include persistent male ambivalence between powerful unconscious attractions to right brain representations, and at the same time strong urges to put down (rebel against) what is revealed in those who attract us. Thus, while we also try to reject the same within ourselves, we are left dependent on, but deeply rebellious against needing what they represent (right brain capacities), yet resisting whenever unconscious desires merge into present awareness.
Consequently, typical left brain males who "fall in love" with right brained females, in unconscious attempts to "marry our missing half" out there, find ourselves torn between needing what they represent, but deeply resistant, even rebellious against its present representatives (e.g., female order, cleanliness, and circular talk).
"Thinking" is use of brain cells for changing per-ceptions, that is, "grasped ceptions" via all five senses into con-ceptions, that is, "held ceptions" in "mind space," in memory, subject to recall, and/or telling to others.
Two types of "thinking" are rooted in two hemispheres of the brain, right and left. Although there must certainly be inter-connective crossovers in operation, I here use each half both literally and metaphorically to amplify distinguishable modes of thinking.
"Right brain" thinking is rooted in acknowledged connections with the brain stem and lower brain systems, such as, the amygdalae, etc. It may be summarized as "genetic wisdom," "emotions," and/or "feeling type" thinking. Bodily urges related to survival are mediated to partial awareness via the right brain, that is, instinctive drives for air and food, safety and comfort. These include perceptions of pleasure/pain, primal emotions (excitement/fear), fight/flight reactions. Instincts for replication, summarized as "sexual drives" are also brought into personal awareness, if at all, via right brain connections.
Pleasure/pain "knowledge" is based in satisfaction of inherited sense parameters, that is, limits of what "feels good/feels bad" in regard to sight (light/dark), sound (loud/soft, rhythm, music, etc.), tastes (sweet/sour), touch (feels good/hurts), and smell.
All this "genetic wisdom" or inherited "knowledge" is common to all humans. But right brain "information" also includes personal perceptions (experiences) of each individual's five senses, that is, what one "learns" in his or her unique contacts with the world. This experiential knowledge probably begins with "mother knowledge," such as, facial recognition plus mother's sounds, smells, tastes, and feels; and also the nature of each particular mother's "graces," both good and bad, her smiles and frowns, that is, what pleases and displeases this first goddess in charge of an infant's access to necessary survival supplies in world beyond the womb.
This early infant "learning" about maximizing personal satisfactions with/from a goddess mother is, I conclude, somehow ingrained in right brain, pre-conscious knowledge. This most primal, deepest, least likely to change "twig bending" may be summarized as "knowing mother," and is common to all animals, humans included.
Simple recognition of "my mother" as distinguished from other adults, quickly phases into "my mother's pleasures," that is, what pleases her, brings her presence versus her absence, smiles rather than frowns, including, her "attention" and services (good milk), her protection (warmth, holding, "love"), and later on, her permission for exploring the world beyond her arms ("letting" one move/act/do).
At primal levels of individual life, when most all resources come from/through a goddess-like mother, an infant is deeply in quest of what may later be called blessing of his/her existence, that is, "permission" to be, and especially to activate one's unique-in-all-the-world self.
This personal learning, in addition to inherited "genetic wisdom," which is self-shaping, begins with how to "con"–that is, influence the behavior of mother, how to shape self behavior in workable ways genetically aimed at securing her best services (maximize resources), "get her best/avoid her worse." Overall, such self-shaping aims at acceptance/affirmation versus rejection/punishment, discerning her particular "goods" and "bads," what pleases/displeases her.
These early "learned" modes of self expression/behavior become the basis of conscience, plus the source of pride/shame when we "live up to" or fail to continue in early learned "knowledge of good and evil" as first acquired in quest of maximized satisfactions in the nurseries of life.
These global type early "learnings," plus types of associated behaviors, are later seen as "personality patterns," and even mistaken or assumed-to-be who one is. They are made up of assorted "images"–visual metaphor for all sense holdings (con-ceptions), including sights, sounds, smells, "feels," etc. acquired in personal experience, beginning with one's mother.
Relevant to later understanding of "thinking" is the fact that such early "learning," rooted in "images" formed from personal per-ceptions, may or may not be worded, named, and brought into left brain language symbols which is the basis of most conscious memory. In fact, I conclude, since most such primal "learning" occurs before the time when language is possible, it remains right-brain based, in what may later be called one's "unconscious mind." We commonly, in effect, "know it well" and deeply, but "don't know how (consciously) we know," and cannot "put into words" why we are moved to act as we do, or be who we "feel like" we are.
I think these unworded images, of experiences yet to be brought into language for left brain type holding, make up the bulk and most moving parts of everyone's essential "learning." Insofar as good living now is concerned, the relevance of these un, or pre-languaged images (sense learnings) is inestimable. No matter how great or extensive one's left brain, "intellectual," worded knowledge may be, this right brain store of primal "learning" remains the primary determination of quality living in present circumstances–that is, the root of happiness and/or misery in everyday life.
Furthermore, the accuracy of one's right brain images, that is, how well they correlate with: 1) what actually occurred when they were first formed ("the way I remember it")–that is, what might have been recorded by a camera and/or tape recorder operating at the time, or how it might have been seen/heard by any other objective person, or; 2) how my images may have stacked up with scientific facts, objective data, and/or accepted truth at the time, is relatively irrelevant in comparison with how well they correlated with my perceptions just then.
– Literally speaking, all language is metaphorical, that is, representational of reality rather than what it refers to. All words are, strictly speaking, symbols, verbal and/or written sounds used to stand for human experience.
Analyzed further, experience itself, which may or may not be represented in language, as is true for infants before language is acquired, may be further broken down into the Creative Process. Basically "experience" begins with perception.
Perceptions, for example, can be languaged–after language becomes available; but a word (language symbol) representing a perception is not the same as that which is perceived. It only "stands for" or represents the perception which exists in experience with or without a word to represent it. "I know what I saw (perception), even if I don't know what to call it (have a name for it)."
Once language is learned we may further use words in advanced grammatical forms where, for example, a word which basically stands for one perception, can be used to stand for a similar perception–that is, as a metaphor within a metaphor.
Initially, as language is learned, as we get words to represent experience, allowing us to think for ourselves and communicate with others, all language experience is literally metaphorical–done with functional metaphors.
In time, this fact is easily and functionally forgotten, as language and conscious thinking proliferate.
A metaphor = "seems like"--for example, "a ghost (image) scarred me." As metaphor, a ghost or any other language representation is natural, even crucial in expanding experience in the Creative Process.
The problem begins when we stop natural processes and begin to take our functional metaphors as real, to confuse language "in our heads" with that which we perceive "out there" (external reality). Perception, literally, perceiving (an on-going process), becomes identified with that which is perceived, the named image, one frozen frame of the continuing process. On-going experience gets stopped with natural perceptions. Possible thinking gets, as it were, constipated with frozen thoughts (nouns); believing is confused with beliefs, as living participles get frozen into nouns.
This temporary use of consciousness is, of course, extremely functional for creative living–that is, making creative decisions for creating world/self. But "sin (as understood in Natural Theology)" sets in when languaged metaphors are idolized rather than kept as mental tools. When judgment, knowledge of right/wrong, becomes the basis of curtailed creativity and/or authority management (civilization), potential consciousness is, as it were, turned in on itself, like a snake biting its own tail.
This process (problem) is bad enough and limiting in the secular world, but devastating in religion and rightly the cause of exodus from Eden here. For example, an imaged "angel" representing a "voice in the night," or, "God told me," as a metaphor for "getting it," is all well and good; but once an image is assumed to be a literal entity outside oneself, the human problem is set in motion.
ELEMENTS OF THINKING
Contrary to typical understanding which crudely identifies left brain mental activity with "thinking" and right brain mental activity with "feeling," both are literally "thinking," except in distinctively different modes. True, right brain thinking has more emotional influences, while left brainers often try to ignore "feelings"; but not true that right brainers are "just being emotional."
In broadest perspective, overall terms of objective/subjective may open the door to sharper seeing. In general, left brain thinking is more objective while right brainers are more subjective. This, of course, is actually an illusion in that all thinking is inherently subjective (of-the-subject) and hence objectivity is only a mental concept which may or may not be attempted by basically subjective thinkers.
But the distinction does open the mental door to another clarifying difference, namely, to the typical content or elements of each mode of mind activity. Left brain thinking is primarily done with language-based words and concepts, while right brainers tend to think in images–that is, hold "pictures" whose content may be drawn from one or all of our five senses, along with emotional input also, which has led to erroneous conclusions about "just being emotional."
Although the name images is drawn from the vision sense, which is only one of five, right brain thinking actually utilizes "images" from all five–that is, "held perceptions" derived from all types of human awareness. Thus, literally speaking (although current language is yet to name them more clearly), we might think of "smell-ages," taste-ages," and "touch-ages"–that is, "im-ages" drawn from other forms of sense perceptions beyond sight alone.
As I use the term image, it may represent any mentally "holdable" perception, any prior experience subject to recall after its occurrence. Although mental "pictures" (visual images) have the benefit of established language (" I remember what I saw"), other holdable "im-ages," such as, "smell-ages (re-callable odors)," are often stronger and more durable in memory ("mind space") than are visual images. For example, one may recall the smell of an early school room better than "how it looked (visual images)."
To complicate the issue even further, right brain type "images" may also be formed from perceptions arising outside/beyond our five senses only–such as, from "impressions" crudely labeled as "ESP," "inspiration," or "voices of gods (if one has a religious background)."
Or, probing even deeper into genetic structures, since perceptions may be internal as well as external, that is, rooted in outside observations (sense-determined) or inside "feelings," many complex right brain "images" are formed from five basic sensations plus many other instinctual "messages," such as, desires.
Although this connection is, so far as I know, yet to be objectively confirmed by brain researchers, I speculate that all genetic directives, including "Reptilian brain (lower brain stem)" instincts (sensual "wants"), "amygdala learning (personal experiences beginning in the womb and expanded greatly in the birth process and soon thereafter)," plus all other pre-language, "holdable" learning, may be mediated to self awareness, if not actually rooted in, via right brain capacities.
For example, recognizing "mother" as distinguished from other "persons," or "facial recognition," as commonly called, is probably more based on smell, taste, sound, and touch than sight alone. Although boys may, for instance, easily "forget" or never form a holdable visual image of "mother" in early life, I conclude that breast "images," probably formed from tastes, smells, and feel, even before sight is possible, forever remain some of the most blindly moving throughout male life.
As evidence, I note that right brainers, typically female, are commonly more aware, both of current sensations and "what they want," than are left brain males who are often insensitive to immediate surroundings as well as emotional nuances in relationships, and commonly "don't know what we want," beyond crudely limited sex-related desires.
The familiar female observation that "men just don't get it," referring, I speculate, to fuller degrees of personal awareness, is, unfortunately, all too often accurate.
From such data as this, I speculate further than this difference may be more related to self-identification than to actual hemispheric locations, that is, the fact that right brainers (whether male or female), are typically more body-oriented than mind-identified (soma than psyche), while left brainers are more focused on concepts than sense images of any sort.
Basic mental craft of left brain thinking is translating non-verbal images into verbal concepts, making discrete mental "things" out of complex, un-worded "pictures" of grasped perceptions tempered by emotions (right brain activity).
Con-cepts are essentially de-coded images, symbolized in words which allow holding complex, unformed, even chaotic images in mind space; hence with (con in Latin) ceptions, implying distance between self and ideas.
Paradoxically, in a left brainer's typical quest, even rush, to eliminate mystery by transforming perceptions into conceptions, we often short-circuit, as it were, the fuller experience, even absorption of images into self (as right brainers typically do), leaving us with, in effect, undigested images, cloaked by shallow concepts.
One common result of these different ways of thinking is left brainers attention, even compulsive habit, of capturing and collecting images of eye and/or mind, as in, photography and theology (philosophy, psychology, and many other "logies").
I analyze these habits, which are far more evident in left brainers than right brainers, as unconscious efforts to re-connect with repressed elements of personal experience lost in our speedy jumps from perceptions to conceptions, while suppressing emotions (Step 2 of the Creative Process) as well as fuller absorption of our images (Step 3) (like returning to scenes of repression in dark hopes of getting it right a second time) as ideally might occur as we "play with our images" which have been frozen into forms, as in photographs, beliefs, or old ideas.
IDEAS AND IMAGES
In the Creative Process, as I analyze natural human experience, Step 1 perceptions, colored by #2 emotions, and shaped into #3 images, are then translated ("de-coded") into #4 concepts. Overall, #1 per-ceptions (thoroughly grasped "ceptions") become #4 con-ceptions. Con, in Latin means with, hence at this level of human experience, subjective "ceptions" or "grasped sensations," acquire degrees of objectivity, so that one can be with or have them, as contrasted with primary per-ceptions at Stage 1, where I and it are essentially the same–that is, "self" is yet undifferentiated from what is perceived.
Stage 4 con-ceptions (per-ceptions one has versus is) allow for symbolization (letting one "thing" stand for another), and hence the creation of words (shaped sounds) and language formed from them. Collections of names (nouns) and represented action images (verbs) may then be related and formed into overall concepts, harmonizing wider varieties of languaged experience into general "principles," and so on.
Point here: This type of language-based mental activity, by which bodily acquired images (as described before) are further de-coded into language-based concepts, becomes the primary "tool" of left brain "thinking."
These differences in types of thinking are based on steps in the overall Creative Process of natural human experience. The more primary type, "subjective thinking," uses Stage 3 images for its vehicle, while more "objective," secondary thinking uses Stage 4 concepts for its material or content.
As such, neither is gender specific. Whole brained persons naturally use coordinated activation of both hemispheres. But following self repression, gender related differences begin to occur. Typically, boys move toward left brain development and self-identify with "concept-based thinking," while girls more commonly remain connected with subjective body-based images and use, without self-identification, their left brain concept-making capacities, mainly in service of instinct-based personal satisfactions.
By the time we become adults, men are typically left brain identified, that is, believe ourselves to literally be our left brain based capacities (conscious, language-based concepts), and not be our own right brain mediated capacities. We then strive to be logical, as is the nature of concept-based, sequential thinking, and to not be "emotional (as right brain capacities are commonly summarized)."
For example, "word as bond" versus "heart"–as symbol for right brain "feelings."
Insofar as personal well being is concerned, honest thinking is as vital as natural breathing and unrestricted blood circulation. Using familiar distinctions of body and mind (or soul, self) as metaphors, we might accurately say that breathing is to body as thinking is to mind, noting that death is as immanent when mind is deprived of thinking, as when body is deprived of air.
But I use the modifier honest thinking to also note that all mental activity which currently passes as "thinking" is not necessarily honest. In fact, I speculate that honest thinking is about as rare as proverbial hens teeth–that is, extremely uncommon in daily life in society.
I estimate that on average, some 95-98% of mental activity is, if it could be accurately weighed, dishonest–that is, other than what is essential for mental well being (like breath for bodily health).
On the negative side, I speculate that repression of honest thinking is the primary cause of most mental illness today, far more so than bad genes, chemical imbalances, and/or harsh circumstances, including "traumatic" events. We humans set ourselves up for predictable degrees of mental illness when we begin to suppress natural thinking in quest of social approval. Curtailed mental honesty is similar to restricted bodily breathing: the more we restrict our minds the further we retreat from mental health, indeed from life as a whole, healthy person.
Conversely, after mental repression with its equally predictable negative consequences on physical health, the path back to well being is only achievable to the extent that one un-represses mind and returns again to honest thinking (as uninhibited children yet do). Drugs and/or improved circumstances may provide temporary relief from consequences of mental repression; but only temporary. For lasting return to symbolic Eden here, return to honest thinking is, I conclude, absolutely essential. Behavioral and/or chemical changes (as induced by drugs) may briefly help; but short of resurrected mental truthfulness, heaven here cannot but remain an illusive dream.
The personal value of writing (such as this) is proportional to its use as a mental crutch for escalated honesty in thinking. The physical and visual activity of putting words on paper or keystrokes on a computer keyboard can be useful in confronting and moving beyond self deceptions so easily maintained when mental activity is carefully kept "in one's head" only.
Obviously there are other proper uses of writing, such as, for making money and/or communicating with others; but insofar as personal well being is concerned, escalated honesty is its potentially redeeming value.
In this quest, tempting dangers lie in secret desires to use writing in a psychological quest for understanding and/or approval of others, either now or in the future–as in, illusions of vindication/affirmation by posterity in compensation for current rejection.
I, for example, have often fallen for this immediately damaging temptation, unconsciously aiming my writing at future generations which I imagine, given advanced information also, may be more acceptive of my present insights; but, just as writing for a real audience now can obviously limit personal honesty in the process, so creating an imaginary readership in the future can distract me from being honestly present now–that is, writing to un-repress my own mind rather than hoping for affirmation in the eyes of others–either now or in an imagined future.
Honest thinking, like unrestrained breathing, is a key to healthy mental and physical life. Most mental illness is, I conclude, deeply rooted in degrees of curtailment or stoppage in honest thinking. Currently popular treatments focus on drug related changes of bodily conditions occurring as a consequence of extended mental dishonesty.
Various negative physical conditions may indeed correlate with diagnosable forms of mental illness; but, I think, they are more like symptoms than causes. Consequently, insofar as underlying mental illness is concerned, drug induced chemical changes are predictably temporary and often serve best to cloak deeper causes.
The same is true to a lesser extent for other forms of treatment, such as, behavior modification and talk therapies. These types of treatment based on medical models can be more effective when they lead to greater self honesty via attention focused on dysfunctional modes of acting and relating. But in both cases, the ultimate value comes from escalated honest thinking.
If my observations are correct, what are the modes of dishonest thinking which result in degrees of a variety of forms of mental illness, ranging from unhappiness to mild depression to more severe forms of diagnosable, insurance-accepted forms of mental illness? What are the steps leading to an eventual downfall of individual human well being?
Those I now see include:
– Simply "not-thinking" about certain subjects, such as, socially unacceptable desires and/or personally threatening situations or events.
Although the powers of conscious thinking are severely limited in the context of instincts and ability to change circumstances, there is a wide range of natural volition inherent in whole-brain activation. Certainly "will power" has been vastly overrated in the past, as reflected in poetry about being "master of my fate," etc.; but even so, we are all born with some measure of thought control–that is, of not only thinking, but also choosing what we think about–or don't.
This later "don't," as in, "Don't think like or about that," is a common first step on the path of mental dishonesty.
– Accepting thoughts of others, as though they are one's own; "believing what one is told" without question–that is, interrupting the process of normal thinking, in which personal perceptions are followed by natural emotions, images, and quickly de-coded into mental concepts, by ingesting, as it were, "swallowing" thoughts of others, as though "their thinking" is correct, right, and good, and one's own ideas are incorrect, wrong, or bad.
This all-too-familiar mental process may be compared to bodily constipation, in which the natural flow of eating/digestion/elimination is interrupted and intestines "get stopped up." In like manner, "mental constipation" occurs when natural thinking (the Creative Process) is interrupted by blindly "taking in" thoughts of others without mental "digestion"–that is, sensibly relating what is heard to what one has personally perceived–or, as we might say, "thinking for oneself" in response to what others say (or one reads, etc.).
This eventually destructive process of "believing what one hears (or reads)," without "making sense of it" to oneself, is culminated by mentally constipating beliefs, often made sacred in religions. All static beliefs, whether religious or secular, right or wrong, useful or irrelevant, represent a stoppage in lively, on-going, honest thinking. The more firmly any belief is held, the more dishonest the person becomes insofar as mental health is concerned.
– Judging is another familiar way of stopping honest thinking. Advanced degrees of capacity for discriminating among perceptions are among Mother Nature's greatest gifts to human beings. Progress, both in civilization and in each individual's personal life is indeed dependent on embracing this evolutional gift; but discerning differences with expanded degrees of perception is not the same as judging what we discern.
The former is a way of escalating personal honesty, but the latter is a major mode of escape into inhuman, false godhood–that is, to leave honest human discrimination by escaping into illusions of being above or below what is concerned, in a god-like position to, in effect, pass sentence on what one "gets" via perception–that is, in biblical terms, "knowing good and evil," right and wrong, as gods rather than escalating accuracy in perceiving thises and thats without judging either.
WORDS AND MEANING
"...to me the words are nice the way they sound..." James Taylor song
Words only "have meanings" to the left brain. To the right brain they are merely sounds, wave lengths striking ear drums, just as other wave lengths are registered as sight to the eyes or odors to the nose–that is, literally meaning-less stimuli except as they sound/look/smell/taste to each person who perceives any of them.
To natural right brain perceptions all words are as they must be to an infant before language is learned–that is, a cacophony of sounds, loud or soft, pleasant or unpleasant, but inherently without tell-able meanings.
The relevance of this obvious fact is critical for understanding many practical consequences following self identification with one or the other brain hemispheres.
First is the fact that "meanings" are a left brain assignment, the product of perceptions translated into concepts (Stage 4 of the Creative Process), not inherent in right brain thinking which commonly occurs in (uses) images rather than defined words/concepts.
Right brainers may use their left brains to create concepts, but often do not, and in either case, words remain mostly like other sounds and smells, that is, sensations without inherent meanings except as assigned by any user. To a right brainer, words only mean "what I mean for them to mean."
In contrast, to a left brainer words are sacred in the sense of inherently meaning-full, as dictionary defined, regardless of what a particular person thinks. Right brainers may be casual about words and concepts, but left brainers take them "religiously."
This often missed difference may reflect in serious misunderstandings between men and women who identify themselves with each hemisphere. To such men, their "words are their bond," that is, their sense of who they are is bonded with words they use and say, a situation quite in contrast with right brain females who may use words loosely because their "bond"–if at all, is with their "heart," not with what they say.
Now back to "meaning."
First, another oft overlooked distinction is relevant, namely, the difference between existential and concept based meanings.
Existential meanings are natural, body based, personally experienced, responses to physical perceptions. As such, they need no language for knowing. We "just know," for example, after touching a hot stove, that "fire burns," even without words or any conceptual meanings.
In contrast, other meanings are mind based, the product of conceptions which may or may not be the result of personal perceptions (individual experience). Unlike existential meanings, this second type, being mind rather than body based, requires language for its very existence. Without words there can be no conceptual meanings. Pre-language infants, for example, may "know" much (have many existential meanings, such as, smell and appearance of "mother"), but without any concept meanings.
Another critical difference lies in the fact that whereas existential meanings are always "first hand"–that is, personally acquired ("learned"), concept meanings are typically acquired from others, communicated with left brain language.
A pre-language baby, for example, "knows" the existential meaning of a "good" bowel movement, but must learn from mother, after language is acquired about the "good" of "going on the pot" instead of "in one's diapers."
And so on–massively....
So far, so good, insofar as essential socialization is concerned, that is, embracing instincts for connections as well as selfing (individuation). Learning and using language is a critical element in joining the human community.
But, to make a quantum (conceptual) leap, this simple but obvious difference between a "good shit" anywhere and a "good boy" who doesn't "soil his pants" may reflect in such consequential concepts as the "Knowledge of Good and Evil," which, according to the bible, got Adam and Eve kicked out of Eden.
Back to analysis:
As noted, words, the basic elements of language and all concepts, have objectively defined meanings which may be learned and used by an individual, but exist "out there" apart from any person's private understanding. "Tree," for example, or "mother," has an objective meaning apart from any infant's (or adult's) understanding.
And so with all language based concepts, such as, "mother knows best." A child, for example, may learn privately, even without language, that "defecation in diapers feels good"; but concepts, such as the one above, commonly come from outside oneself (e.g., from mother). But even if a child creates such a concept from his own experience, it must be translated into left brain language for holding as a tell-able concept.
Point: All language based concepts capable of being "thought" in words, written on paper, printed in books, and/or told to others, are essentially left brain related. The consequences of this fact become significant when a person identifies him or herself with one or the other hemispheres.
Another relevant difference is rooted in the fact that whereas all existential meanings must be personally acquired "first hand" via bodily (right brain mediated) experience, any worded concept can be learned from others, via books and education (in school or from communication), without–and this is the critical distinction, any degree of personal (bodily) perceptions (other than eyes seeing words or ears hearing sounds).
Consequently, concepts can exist, even exponentially, in mind only with no personal perceptions to back them. They can become firmly held beliefs without any existential (right brain) meanings.
The consequently relative ease of acquiring left brain conceptual meanings, in contrast with personal right brain experience, must be exceptionally tempting, especially to males with natural practice at focused attention (e.g., aiming at game rather than rearing babies).
And, conversely, the utility of existential (versus conceptual) meanings in inherited and social female agendas, must make remaining right brain oriented far more practical than defining words and learning language based concepts (e.g., public education and "intellectual" facts and impersonal "theories").
Now to the perhaps most critical and far reaching consequences of these distinctions in the daily lives of us who identify our selves with one or the other brain side–most typically, males with left, females with right:
After such split brain identifications, left brainers typically seek to find meaning-in-life via left brain mental concepts rather than natural, genetic physical (right brain) experience–as in, "getting smart, "knowing everything," "being reasonable," "making sense," advanced education, and erasing all mystery via "understanding" with left brain concepts.
Although right brainers, typically female, are far less likely to fall for these left brain temptations (as in, repressing "heart" and bonding with words), when existential meanings go lacking, as in, unhappy marriages, right brainers may blindly resort to seeking conceptual salvation in daily life via such religious beliefs (concepts) as: self sacrifice is virtuous; virtue will be rewarded; Jesus saves; or, God answers prayer–or in other secular concepts, such as, soft is better than hard; chastity is good; mothering is sacred; cleanliness is next to godliness; politeness ("playing fair" or justice), and peace making are right (at least better than crudeness, cheating, and war).
Left and right brainers typically use language, especially in conversations, in different ways, which, if unrecognized and/or ignored, predictably reflect in misunderstandings, if not regular conflict. Only if one or the other recognizes these differences and artfully compromises, intimate talk between left and right brainers will be rare, if ever.
– Left brainers use language for two major reasons: 1) Communicating information, discrete bits of mental data, mostly seen as "fact" or concepts; 2) Establishing and proving oneself by competing with ideas, while keeping safe emotional distances. Typical left brain "games," usually played unconsciously, include "One-ups-man-ship" or trying to "get the best" of others.
– Right brainers commonly use language for: 1) Voicing right brain, bodily perceptions in words and left brain type language; 2) Making and keeping connections with other persons. Games include: "Mine's Even Worse" and other forms of putting oneself down while putting up on listeners in an effort to keep peaceful connections.
In voicing perceptions, right brainers are putting into words what they feel/see rather than analyzing facts/concepts and/or "making points" or "trying to win."
In so doing they often take little account or even give much attention to what others are saying, except as it either stimulates their senses, much like any other sound or sight, or jogs their memory. Otherwise they mostly wait for a break in what is being said in order to politely continue with self-saying.
Honest thinking is, I think, even rarer than proverbial hen's teeth. Most of my mental activity–and that of others as best I can tell, is a perversion of natural thinking into a psychic tool used for gaining and maintaining social connections, plus translating private goals into socially acceptable beliefs and concepts–that is, justifying unacceptable desires with acceptable motives, such as, "helping others," etc.
There is, of course, nothing wrong with these uses of mind; social connections are crucially important in maintaining families and established societies, themselves essential for personal life in the now "civilized" world. Talk, obviously, is a major medium for building and keeping functional connections with other persons and communities with influences and/or powers over private existence. Nor is rationalization–that is, making up socially acceptable reasons for socially rejected urges, including creating socially acceptable images of oneself, inherently bad. Indeed, where might any of us now be in social standing, as well as tolerable in our own eyes, if we had not devoted considerable mental energy to explaining our actions to others in semi-sensible form, and making up self images more in harmony with society than with personal instincts.
For example, most social communication consists of telling and repeating personal perceptions in socially acceptable language, beginning with those most common to all, such as, the weather, current events, movies, and TV shows, with occasional personal revelations in the company of friends already proven to accept us with less judgment as commonly operative in society. Often, in seemingly safer circumstances, perceptions about external reality and internal sensations may be briefly combined, as in reference to commonly shared weather and how one feels about, say, falling temperatures.
In even more intimate (read that "safer") circumstances, such as, with very close friends, spouses, lovers, therapists, etc., one may proceed further in reporting on personal perceptions, such as, emotions, uncommon ideas, deeds and/or offenses of others, plus analyses of various circumstances.
But, for clarification here, even honest reporting of intimate personal feelings, events, theories, and beliefs about oneself are to distinguished from honest thinking as I understand this rare happening. Certainly telling about oneself to another person–or group of persons, can be a form or means of expressing honest thinking; but in practice the two are often far apart.
For instance, one may report on, that is, tell others about even the most intimate details in his or her private life, including commonly concealed actions, feelings, desires, and motives, without any measure of honest thinking. As every good priest and therapist knows, many "confessions"–even of the most socially unacceptable and commonly concealed deeds and/or desires, may actually be con jobs aimed at securing, for example, forgiveness, sympathy, or understanding in avoidance of honest thinking.
What then is honest thinking?
From an overall perspective, honest thinking is the mental part of natural movement in the Creative Process, beginning with Step One, Perception and proceeding on toward Step Five, Becoming. Thinking, as I mean the word here, is a synonym for mental activity, brain activation, as operative when one is moving naturally along the Creative Process of normal experience.
I attach the modifier honest to imply other types of mental activity commonly taken as "thinking" but are essentially dishonest from a personal standpoint, that is, involve ideas and/or words contrary to one's actual experience.
Honest thinking is mental activity aimed at "making sense" of personal experience–that is, transforming per-ceptions into con-ceptions, de-coding, as it were, cryptic emotions and images into clarified ideas and answers, in which personal experience is creatively shaped in ways intended to advance/amplify personal satisfactions.
in the outside physical world
may be as threatening to right brainers
as discordant ideas
in the inside mental world
can be to left brainers
Right brain thinking, being sense based (subjective) is essentially self authenticating in order to "be right"; that is, like emotions, right brain thoughts (personal ideas) do not need external verification. A right brainer typically "just knows" what is true (for him or her).
Again, in contrast, left brain thinking, being concept based rather than formed from sense perceptions, is inherently fragile and in need of external verification. Unless or until left brain ideas can be "scientifically (objectively) proven," they remain questionable and undeserving of being seen as "right" or "true."
RULES AND PRINCIPLES
In quest of external verification, left brain type thinking typically establishes (or accepts) objective rules or principles believed to be true or right regardless, that is, apart from any current circumstances. Easily, dedicated left brainers become "true believers," that is, blindly accept and follow beliefs established in any field of endeavor.
Conversely, equally dedicated right brainers, being sense rather than concept oriented, are subjectively guided, without need for objective rules to live by. Left brainers often try to live by infallible rules/principles/beliefs–externally determined right and wrong, good and evil, while the "ethics (to use a left brain term)" of right brainers are typically situational rather than regardless.
In conversation left brainers are likely to be "explaining themselves"–since ideas need proof or external acceptance, while right brainers can simply say what they think confidently, without needing to explain.
Misunderstanding easily occurs for left brainers who blindly project their own modes and mistake right brain "rightness" as judgmental, as is typically true for left brainers who "think they are right (like 'true believers')" in whatever fields of thought they establish themselves.
CHAOS AND ORDER
Left brain thinking is the natural way of bringing order to the chaotic world of right brain perceptions. When left brain capacities are ignored or repressed, as more commonly occurs with females, then it may seem that "disorder," e.g., dirt and clutter, "is driving me crazy."
Actually, degrees of craziness resulting from left brain repression are simply being dimly mirrored in outward evidences of worldly disorder (natural "chaos").
Ordering outward things, as in, "cleaning house," closets, etc., may bring temporary relief, as repressed left brain capacities are sublimated from mental conceptualizing (as in, honest thinking or prioritizing activities) into physical object management; but diminished "craziness" can only come from re-wholing one's brain, that is, unrepressing, re-embracing left as well as right hemisphere capacities.
Right brainers hear more but listen less, while left brainers are better listeners but often don't hear (receive) sounds which actually strike their eardrums. Left brainers are more verbal, while right brainers are more non-verbal.
This play on words is intended to point to the deeper fact that right brainers are naturally more sensitive to ordinary surroundings, including hearing as well as seeing, smelling, etc., more so than left brainers who focus on sense making and goal reaching more than "paying attention" to present circumstances.
Also, right brainers, typically more attuned to, even caught up in, personal reactions to physical stimuli than to words and ideas, are less focused on experiences of others, especially as communicated through words. Being more non-verbal than verbal themselves, they are typically more sensitive to emotions, facial expressions, tone of voice, and other forms of non-verbal communication, but often inattentive to verbalizations.
They may in practice be patient in letting others talk, even appearing to be interested in what they say, while actually caught up in their own internal life and/or observing physical (sensed) stimuli, rather than following a train of thought in a speaker, understanding what is being said, or mentally responding with ideas of their own.
When so, right brainers may easily interrupt a left brain monologue with a current observation of present stimuli, without even recognizing their interruption as such. Also, reflecting their holistic (circular) type thinking, they may freely change any present subject without qualms or realizing such as evidence of not listening to what others have been saying.
With other right brainers, more concerned with personal connections than impersonal conceptions (ideas of others), such interruptions and/or subject changes may be comfortably accepted and easily reciprocated with similar changes.
However, left brainers, being more familiar with focused conversation which is linear rather than circular in form, and based on logically arranged bits of data rather than random observations, sensations, or emotions, are often threatened by typical right brain type talking.
Trains of thought reflecting left brain modes of thinking, are often difficult for circular thinking right brainers to patiently follow, let alone enjoy.
Also, since left brain talk is often in support of deeply competitive agendas, that is, winning concept-based competition, or making points, as contrasted with right brain agendas more about cooperation than point making and certainly not aimed at mental defeats, there is an inherent flaw or written-in paradox whenever left and right brainers attempt extended conversations.
Left brainers may actually listen more attentively to words and ideas of others less because of personal interest in what is being said or in the person speaking, than for being sharply focused on possible fact-flaws in the ideas of a speaker, later to be used in mentally defeating the other person, or proving oneself to be right.
In contrast, apparent inattention to a left brainer's often extended, even labored explanations of a logical idea by a context-oriented right brainer, may be less reflective of disinterest or personal put down, as is often true of left brain type conversations, than only of his "long winded" mode of communication.
Point: Although left brainers may be better listeners in the sense of following extended lines of talk by others, that is, "letting speakers have their say" in whatever mode they choose (like a paid therapist does), right brainers may actually be more accepting, even understanding, without grasping nuances of verbal expression or ideological structures.
SUCCESS AND SACRIFICE
External success, that is, winning, reaching goals, being first, getting trophies, is to left brain identified persons as outward sacrifice is to right brainers. Contrasting external or outward appearances are, however, to be distinguished from internal ("personal") stances. Outward winners (those who arrive first or get the trophies are not necessarily successful as persons; nor is outward sacrifice synonymous with personally "losing."
Just as sacrificial stances of, e.g., Jesus and Gandhi, led to success in time, so apparent sacrifices of right brainers, typically female, may reflect in successful "winning" over outwardly dominant left brain males.
RIGHT, WRONG, AND JUDGMENT
The shared subject of right and wrong, good and evil, is decidedly different depending on one's brain hemisphere identification. Whereas left brainers consciously base their judgments of right and wrong on objectively verifiable data and externally established rules and laws, right brainers judge more subjectively on the basis of personal experience, including genetic knowledge.
Objective verification includes repeatable results form similar actions, such as, scientific-like experiments or, proverbially, learning from "hitting one's head against a stone wall." Typically rules and laws (social structures) evolve from similar group experiences, such as, repeatable consequences of, e.g., theft and murder as "wrong" for social stability.
Right brain "good and evil" may or may not follow such left brain type judgments, but in either case is far less determined by any objective rules. "Right," for example, is more identified with "feels right" or "looks good" than with objective laws about behavior or rules about appearance.
Even the nature of judgment itself is different according to brain orientation. Left brain type judgments, less personally based, tend to be harsher, stricter, and less subject to bending than do those rooted in right brain experience where flexibility is more common.
Ethics and morality, for example, are more "situational" than "regardless" for right brainers. "Well, it all depends," a right brain mother may say. "Yes, I know it was wrong, but he didn't mean to hurt anyone," or, "Yes, but he's my son and I love him."
Meanwhile a typical left brain attitude is "regardless," that is, "wrong is wrong" no matter the circumstances of who an offender is.
Furthermore, religious type judgments involving spiritual "put downs" and cloaked self-righteousness are more common with left brain ethical conclusions. Although right brainers may be quicker and consequently appear to be more "righteous," on analysis their conclusions may be more like sharp discriminations, what they honestly believe, than like actual judgments, that is, certainly "right for me" or "as I see it," but without "putting down" on those who see differently, or personal feelings of "being better than others."
These distinctions extend even down to word definitions and contrasting self identifications. For left brainers, even the "right" meaning of words and grammar is objectively determined. For example, "left is left, and not right," regardless. But for a right brainer, words are simply subjective tools and may be re-defined at will. Pointing right, for example, but saying "left," a right brainer may reply without judgment, saying, "Well, you know what I meant."
And on even deeper levels, left brain oriented persons, such as, typical males, are commonly more judgmental about primary identifications than are, for example, right brain oriented females. When so, we males more blindly and judgmentally think "our way is right," or that "being reasonable" is better than "being emotional"–that is, left brain is good, right brain is bad.
Right brain females, in contrast, may obviously "feel like" and "live-as-though" their "emotional way" is better, but are commonly less judgmental about men "who have to be so reasonable" or "have to explain or make sense about everything."
Right brain embraced and self-identified-with capacities typically reflect in apparently higher degrees of self confidence ("being right") apart from outside affirmation. As seen in small children yet unrepressed, right brain activation and self confidence seem to be synonymous. For example, such a child's acts, all the way from bowel movements to refrigerator art do not need adult approval to be known as "good."
In contrast, left brain based confidence–that is, for those identified with left while suppressive of right (typical males), being based on discrete bits of information, is relatively fragile in the absence of consciously held facts ("much knowledge"). Consequently all mystery becomes a threat to left brain based confidence. Without an "answer" or explanation, that is, conscious understanding of any phenomenon, left brain identified persons are typically uncomfortable.
Hence, in quest of confidence, left brainers move quickly to explain everything, to "know that is happening," to erase mystery, even to jump to conclusions with limited (or no) data in order to avoid feeling personally threatened.
Left brainers need maps in mind, while right brainers may go by sensed sign posts.
As left brain is threatened by emotions, right brain is often threatened if pressed for conscious, wordable "reasons." "Feelings" may undermine logical thinking, just as required explanations may threaten right brain confidence.
For smoothing conversation between persons identifying with differing hemispheres:
– Ask left brainers: "What do you think about so and so?"
Right brainers: "How do you feel about this or that?"
– To left brainers: Tell facts, give bits of information.
Tell right brainers stories, give verbal pictures, describe sensations, reveal emotions.
–With left brainers, talk in sequences, "logically," connecting points, focused, with a revealed aim. Left brainers want to know "Why are you telling me this?"
– With left brainers, don't change subjects before one is finished.
–Right brainers talk holistically, reveal whole pictures; no sequence or obvious connection is required. Subject may be changed freely, even in the midst of a sentence.
–With left brainers, competition of ideas, winning is by most reasonable data supportable by outside verification.
–With right brainers, words are for making and keeping connections; winning is off limits; sharing data versus making points.
SPEED OF ACTIVITY
Right brain thinking, including decision making, is speedy in comparison with relatively slow left brain thinking, much like a computer almost instantaneously scanning a data base, or Google finding an answer or calling up a picture image.
In contrast, left brain thinking, when carefully done, requires calling up discrete perceptions (facts, concepts, verbal images) sequentially, one at the time, and weighing or comparing each with some particular goal also held in mind space while comparisons are being made.
"Makes sense" is to left brain as "feels right" is to right.
"Is reasonable, logical" versus "looks good" or "works."
Left brain thinking is confirmed with objective facts, while right brain conclusions need no outside confirmation.
Although left brain thinking, being language based, can often explain itself with repeatable, verifiable bits of data ("facts"), right brain thinking may be without conscious explanations or supportive facts. Consequently, from left brain perspectives, right brain thinking may be easily dismissed as "just feelings" or "illogical conclusions" when in fact it has rapidly included a wealth of sensation (un-worded) information (huge "data bank"), often far more data than logical thinking can produce, even when given much time to reach a conclusion.
Often quickly made right brain based decisions turn out to be wiser in time than laborious left brain conclusions which took time to make.
Sights can be deceiving
but seeing is believing
Left brain nouns often substitute
for right brain participles
Left Brainers: "missing half" = opposite brain; goddess worship.
Right Brainers: security; self-sacrifice as mode; male management.
As commonly understood, consciousness refers to perceptions "held," as it were, in "mind space" subject to being thought about or communicated to others.
Because conscious "thinking" is done primarily with spoken language (word symbols), and speech is rooted in the Broca's area of the left brain, I associate consciousness with left brain activity more so than with right. Understanding, apart from words and speech, may be based in Wernicke's area of the right brain; but because we typically think of consciousness as being what can be put into words, I therefore identify it with the left brain.
Awareness is the right brain parallel to left brain consciousness. Right brain is "sciousness" while left brain is con-sciousness, that is, with "sciousness." Con or with points toward mental distance, slowness of held knowledge in distinction from spontaneous nature of right brain knowing (as "with").
CONSCIOUSNESS VERSUS AWARENESS
Consciousness, as popularly understood–that is, discrete perceptions, bits of data, held in mind space (remembered) and subject to word representation in being repeated to others or written down, is primarily a left brain related capacity. Right brain may actually hold and be aware of (deeply alert to) vastly larger numbers of perceptions, including sense data, stored memories (even from pre-verbal times), picture images (e.g., faces, stories), and unworded emotions, but the nature of right brain "storage" (place of memory bank, such as, "bones") is often not immediately available to left brain type consciousness (wordable data), and may even exist-with-power completely apart from conscious mind space (e.g., "amygdala learning" and pre-language experience (as in womb and before language is learned).
Right brain knowledge may be crudely summarized as "unconscious," in contrast with re-callable left brain type perceptions, or "pre-conscious"; but such left brain perspectives may easily miss (or dismiss) the wide scope of right brain awareness (even without words for immediate communication, or need to say so), or confuse silent presence and sharp attention with "unconsciousness."
SYMBOLS AND CONSCIOUSNESS
Symbols are language representations, some for external perceptions, and others for realities which exist only in mind's eye. Names, for example, are mental symbols for things which are often external to oneself; but other symbols stand for mental notions projected onto outside sources, such as, money, symbolic of power and wealth; time, for mechanical clock measurements, trophies, for assorted victories, flags, for national groups, and theology (plus psychology, philosophy, etc.), for truth.
Consciousness and symbolization probably evolved in consort with proliferation of language in civilization. As sound use gradually became solidified into words as needed for communication with other male hunters and warriors, the Broca's area of the left brain must have evolved complexities allowing for language and consciousness.
Con-sciousness literally is less like a separate capacity than an expanded, language-based ability to hold more and more images in awareness (mind space) at the same time.
Because symbols, e.g., words, are more compact and discrete than presentations which they re-present, they take up, as it were, less mind space (neural connections) than, say, a visual image. "A picture" may indeed "be worth a thousand words," but, in computer analogy, a single picture requires multitudes of "memory" in comparison with the few kilobytes necessary for a thousand words.
Consciousness is better understood as the word implies–that is, con = with, and scious = knowledge; hence with implying separation or distance from knowledge (as a noun or entity), as contrasted with knowing, a participle, implying on-going experience rather than static, held-down mental entities.
The relevance of this distinction it to point toward significant differences between left and right brain images or holdable perceptions, both of which may be called "consciousness." Because left brain, symbol-based data (language-based images, knowledge-as-noun) is more compact, it requires, as it were, less mind space for a large amount of data. But in contrast, right brain images, formed from sense-based images must, in theory, require much more metaphored "space" for holding.
Consciousness and self consciousness are not synonyms. One can be conscious–fully aware both of surroundings and oneself without being self conscious, or, conversely, one can be self conscious with relatively little awareness of anything beyond the feeling itself (is it shame, guilt, or just plain fear?).
Self awareness without self consciousness is a product of whole brain living–when/where one is both "feeling" and "thinking," that is, discerning sharply, holistically with right brain capacities, but also monitoring carefully all perceptions with left brain reasoning abilities.
Debilitating self consciousness only occurs after one, in effect, splits whole brain thinking and begins to self-identify with one hemisphere, especially the left half.
This functional "split" is, of course, not literal, as if the Corpus callosum were cut in two, but only psychic. As such it may have been the deeper insight portrayed in the bible as occurring after "...eating the fruit of the tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil." Before the "forbidden fruit" was "eaten," Adam and Eve were said to be "naked and not ashamed." Afterward, becoming, in effect, "ashamed of their bodies," they were exited from the Garden of Pleasure (Eden) on earth.
Their (our) problem ("sin") was not, as some have concluded, becoming conscious and "able to see themselves as 'naked' (self-seeing)," but rather splitting whole brainedness and presuming, in typical-until-now-left brain-fashion, to "know what's right and wrong (good and evil)."
Childhood "innocence (e.g., being naked without shame)" is not ignorance, blindness or "unconsciousness," for example, about nakedness, et al, but rather existing in a whole brained state in which no form of awareness–self included, is judged to be good or evil.
"Loss of innocence" is literally "loss of whole brainedness," that is, splitting hemispheric capacities, coming to identify oneself with only one half, and thereafter avoiding and trying to suppress the other as though (note metaphor) "it" is "not me."
"Original sin" in the natural world (Garden of Pleasure on earth) is judgment–that is, assuming "godhood" required for "Knowledge of Good and Evil," not "becoming conscious," for example, of "being naked."
Whole brain thinking (before or after splitting) includes innate, natural awareness of "selfing (instincts, bodily capacities, pre-conscious urges, desires, etc.)" as well as of circumstances outside oneself (self/world). Some elements of both are conscious (in awareness as holdable perceptions); many more are below levels of conscious awareness (e.g., internal "knowledge" of hunger, pleasure/pain, desire for satisfactions, how to pump blood and heal wounds, etc.) or external stimuli received and registered without "knowing it" consciously (e.g., wave lengths of light, sound, and smell at the edges of conscious perception).
Bodily shame of inherited desires and capacities is unnatural–that is, a result of left brain type judgments ("sin") based on socially acquired "consciences"–beginning with "minding our mothers," which come at the expense of repressed consciousness (full awareness only possible with whole brain thinking).
VOLITION VERSUS DE-CISION
Volition means willing or choosing, from Latin volo, meaning I wish; this from an older root word wel, meaning well, as in "well being."
De-cision is from Latin de, meaning from, and Latin cis, meaning "on this side of."
I identify right brain with relatively spontaneous volition and left brain with conscious, language based, reasonable, often labored de-cisions.
Literally, right brain based movements are more like cisions than de or from something else, that is, opted activity arising from "citing" (feeling versus thinking).
Volition "feels right," even if or when it doesn't make sense. As in poetry, music and adoration (if not appreciation), grace (if not gratitude), volition "seems like" (note metaphor) direction, as in, given versus gotten or even self created.
Left brain de-cisions are literally self-made, that is, one "makes" such choices by "making up his mind," as different from "hearing" creative inclinations.
Right brain volition is curtailed by self repression, especially in men, in favor of exaggerated focus and reliance on conscious logical, left brain de-cisions either "made" by oneself or determined (dictated) by external memes, such as laws, rules, gods, or other persons.
Volition, rooted in istance, citement, and spiraion, "seems to be" spontaneous (in the moment), while de-cisions are "from" outside, as, ex-istance, ex-citement, and in-spiration, because creative forces/energies of Mother Nature have been repressed in favor of beliefs in, for example, Father God and dictation by his local representatives, and/or secular memes largely evolved from older religious authorities.
Volition is right brain activity, relatively spontaneous, while decisions rely on left brain consciousness.
MALES AND DECISIONS
Men typically act independent, as though living for ourselves. But many of our movements are actually directed otherwise, cloaking deeper dependencies. We males often avoid the challenges of volition type movements by such unconscious dependencies as:
– Deference to females.
– Habitual behaviors, such as, "being good" and/or blindly rebelling against external expectations.
– Idolatry of gods, both religious and secular, e.g., dictation by religiously approved behaviors and beliefs; obedience to social and religious authorities ("What would Jesus do?").
– Deference to laws and social rules.
– Deference to public opinions, the meme, What They Think.
– Habit control, e.g., eating all the food on one's plate.
– Idolatry of various left brain concepts, such as time, numbers, speed, efficiency, cost.
– Personal habits, such as, stinginess, bravery.
– Personality patterns, such as, dominant/submissive.
–Genetic directives unmonitored by conscious responsibility, such as, "what I want to do," or ,"what I feel like doing."
– Work requirements, job directives.
DECISIONS AND REPRESSION
The realm of human decision making is relatively small in comparison to the far greater number of forces which, in effect, "make up our minds for us." What we can personally choose is circumscribed by vastly more than what we do without personal choice–that is, what is, in effect, "decided for us" as individuals by such forces as blind instincts and social directives, genes and memes.
All too easily we fall into illusions which grandly exaggerate what a person can choose for or about him/herself, while at the same time underestimating the power of dark, unseen forces which determine and dictate most aspects of daily life.
But even so, the very limited realm of personal choice in the face of impersonal determinations is critically important insofar as good living is concerned. Here I explore how limited choose-ability is related to psychic repression–in particular, how are our possibilities for "deciding what to say or do" related to brain hemispheres?
First, my summary conclusions so far:
– Curtailment of already limited choose-ability by self repression is ultimately the most costly consequence of this common mode of coping with external reality–that is, of creatively deciding "what to do with ourselves" in the world as we find it to be.
Immediately, inevitable projection of natural creative powers onto external images, such as, gods, society, and women, is more dangerous. But in the long run, curtailment of personal choose-ability is finally even more costly insofar as personal well being is concerned. This mode of coping may be functional for society in general, and femininity in particular, but limitations on male choices can be devastating.
Without opting for repression as one's mode of coping with external forces, secondary projection would not occur. Hence, I conclude, understanding the nature of primal options is critically important as a possible key to "how we go wrong" in finding worldly fulfillment, and consequently what may be necessary for "getting it right" once again.
WHOLE BRAIN DECISIONS
When brain hemispheres are operative in harmony–that is, before divisions initiated by self repression, or after self healing (wholing), choices arise smoothly and naturally, without inherent conflict.
The greater wealth of warm right brain images and desires are quickly tempered by lesser numbers of cool, left brain notions acquired from prior experience, and melded into personal choices born of the marriage of both.
All-too-familiar difficulties in deciding, and/or making choices based on reason or desire alone, are essentially unnatural–that is, the consequences of self splitting ("spiritual schizophrenia") resulting from repression/projection, amplified by self identification with one hemisphere of the other.
Most typically, personal repression occurs along gender lines, with females remaining identified with right brain images, while males try to deny such knowledge and identify ourselves with left brain ideas.
To the extent that these internal divisions are created and self identifications frozen in practice, with, e.g., males living-as-though we are left brained only, and women as being right brains, then the stage is set for such predictable dramas as: Battle of the Sexes; male idolatry of reason and sense making (a major sin of mine); female worship at thrones of comfort and cleanliness; marriages not made in heaven, but in illusions of external wholeness ( 1 + 1 making One); plus, of course, consistent difficulties in "making up" one's split mind whenever images from a rejected part of one's whole self are even dimly recognized.
Stated in degrees, as, of course, we humans mostly live: decisions on any level, about, e.g., what to eat for breakfast or what may happen after death, are relatively simple, seemingly spontaneous, to the extent that one is whole brained. Or, conversely, the greater one is split within, the more completely one is identified with either the left or right hemispheres of the brain, the more difficult even small decisions become, unless, of course, one escapes being human into false godhood and presumes to know good and evil, or to have a god who does and may, if you are good, tell you.
DECISIONS AND GENDER
The speed of mental activity with left brain, language-based images (e.g., words/ideas) and right brain sense-based images (e.g., sights/sounds, etc.) is vastly different and extremely significant after typical gender identifications with one or the other hemispheric functions.
In comparison, right brain mental activity, commonly called "feeling," is at jet speed, almost like light speed, while left brain "thinking," restricted by bulky language-based images and laws of logic must clunk along like an old horse-drawn carriage.
Consequently, when time is relevant, decisions based on rational thinking (left brain images) are slow and labored, while "feeling" based choices are so fast as to appear easy and spontaneous.
But the most significant difference in mental activity rooted in split brain identification, is the data base for each, namely, the vast wealth of sensory images mediated via right brain activation in comparison to the relative paucity of sense (rational) images.
Even the largest imaginable quantify of language-based conscious images, as might be held by the "smartest," most intellectual of all logical thinking males, is minuscule in comparison to the wealth of sensory images inherited and acquired by even the least educated female type person who activates and identifies with her "feeling" knowledge.
Consequently, both in recorded history as well as everyday life today, after split brain identifications have occurred, left brainers, typically male, have been severely limited in making many important daily decisions. Hence the need for and reliance on oracles in ancient Greece and Rome, and wives in modern America–that is, males who may be good, even great, in decision making for science, theology, philosophy, technology, and world management, but woefully lacking in knowing what to do with ourselves outside the severely limited sphere of reasonable thinking–as in, proverbial professors unable to find their umbrellas, or average husbands who can't find their socks, make a healthy sandwich, dress in style, or decide what to do on weekends when decisions are not dictated by "making a living" or assorted "honey-do's."
For whole brain persons, I conclude with limited data (e.g., young children and less repressed adults)–that is, those with harmoniously operating brain hemispheres, most all daily life decisions are naturally made with relative ease, quickly, smartly, and without personal stress.
Choices, in effect, occur naturally "on their own," as wealthy sensory based images ("feelings") are tempered by sense based "thinking" and merged in "what-to-do/say" in worldly life. Consciously acknowledged "wants (genetically based desires)," for example, are quickly weighed with acquired knowledge about predictable consequences, and relatively "smart" choices are speedily made.
I belabor this description in order to distinguish natural deciding from more familiar situations in which split brained persons unconsciously function otherwise, as in: existing determined by a wide variety of memes, beliefs, habits, so-called virtues, desires of others (What They Think), social structures, "inspiration," and so on–all of which may be evasions and/or escapes from natural, whole brained type personal decisions.
Typical examples of unnatural modes of making choices include:
– Men determined by: job requirements ("work" dictations), or blindly worshiped male-type virtues, such as, winning, speed, efficiency, saving face, and, of course, making sense.
– Women dictated by: mothering requirements ("home making") or unconsciously idolized virtues such as, cleanliness, comfort, physical beauty, style, politeness, "being nice," and social acceptability, especially opinions of other females.
This is an analysis of decision-making capacities in typical males today.
Males are good at decisions which can be logically made on the basis of known, language-based facts held in consciousness, or when guided or dictated by other left brain concepts, such as, numbers (how many?); time (when and how often?); winning (being first or on top); efficiency (how fast with least effort?); external authorities (gods, mothers, bosses, teachers); or internal left brain type entities such as: ego, "my word," "face" or reputation, other self-identified capacities ("strong, "smart," "clever," etc.).
But, unfortunately, males, typically with repressed right brain capacities (e.g., emotions, "feelings," intuition, and passion), are consequently deficient in whole brain decision making capacities–as more commonly operative in females.
Furthermore, mental energies otherwise available for creative, whole brain decisions are dissipated in efforts to establish and maintain right brain repression. When so, limited powers of logical "thinking" are exaggerated and commonly dissipated in inward battles against right brain "feelings."
On the surface it may appear that men are better at making decisions than are women–that is, quicker, more objectively and reasonably–and conversely, that females are more subjective, slower, and in general, "have a hard time making up their minds."
In may regards and in certain specific situations, such as, shopping, dressing, bathing, and decorating, this is obviously true. But a closer look may reveal that speedier choices by males based on apparently "logical facts" rather than "emotions," may cloak our difficulty in remaining sensitively present and taking all available data into consideration before drawing conclusions.
And, conversely, that female slowness in deciding is less about difficulty in making decisions than the fact that careful evaluation of many related factors does reasonably take more time. The judgmental observation about male "objectivity" in decision making, as contrasted with "irrational female subjectivity" may be more related to brain hemispheres than than true objectivity–that is, that left brain, logical, sequential thinking is indeed quicker and easier, not because it is better, but rather that it excludes a wealth of right brain information which does in fact take longer to discern and evaluate.
Also, the often speedier nature of male decisions based on available "facts" rather than right brain "emotions" may be more related to restricted arenas in which we opt to choose–that is, we males may take unreasonable pride in speed because we typically avoid more difficult realms of choice, often limiting ourselves to genetic motivation only, rather than whole brain analysis.
Truly difficult choices, for example, in such creative arenas as: how to rear children, run a household, have intimate relationships, cooperate rather then compete, predict the future, and make peace versus war, may be avoided by left brain oriented males, who limit our creative choices to "objective" arenas beyond personal control (e.g., "running the world" versus managing children and a household).
Overall: I conclude that appearances notwithstanding, males are typically deficient in creative, whole brain decision making because of repressed right brain capacities. Our pride in speedy objectivity and judgments about female subjectivity may cloak limited personal creativity and, more significantly, our cloaked dependency on gods, rules, and females for directions in more significant arenas of daily living.
Chauvinism and/or submission/rebellion notwithstanding, we males typically seem to keep wise goddess images created early in life safely unconscious and unwittingly projected later onto unsuspecting females, including repressed male capacity for creative decision making in many significant arenas of daily life.
Predictable consequences include:
– Unfortunately, relatively few life decisions related to personal creativity and well being, as well as successful human relationships can wisely be made with left brain data alone.
Result: Left brain oriented males, good at logical, train-track type "thinking," as useful in technology (making things) and intellectual endeavors such as, theology, philosophy, psychology, etc. (including this collection), are often notoriously limited in comprehensive decision making and circular type "feeling" based decisions–as are more common with females.
When larger decisions are called for, e.g., in cooperating rather than competing, making peace rather than war, creating beauty, relationship harmony, rearing children, left brain oriented males have typically turned to, relied on, or unconsciously opted for female directions, e.g., oracles of old, and wives of today.
A bottom line indication of typical male repression of creative decision making is evidenced in lostness men may feel when faced with relative freedom–that is, with "nothing to do" as determined by circumstances ("have to's," e.g., job requirements) "should do's," "ought to's, "honey do's," habits, or inward compulsions. Retired men, for example, after a lifetime of "other direction," often find such freedoms too much to face, even to the extent of dying "early."
RIGHT BRAIN DECISIONS
Decisions in right brain thinking are relatively spontaneous, as though "given" or "natural" rather than "gotten" or "worked through." In contrast, left brain decisions, being language or word based, that is, "logical" rather than "emotional," often require "much thinking" or weighing objective data rather than being quick, like "feelings."
This is because left brain language-based thinking is younger in evolutionary time (later to evolve) and hence more dependent on conscious knowledge than pre-conscious, ancient "wisdom." Also, in terms of sheer quantities of perceptions being "computed" in right brain thinking, existing in pictures versus word images, is far more expansive and complex than linear concepts, as weighted in left brain thinking.
IMAGES AND IMAGINATION
An image is literally a "figment of one's imagination"–that is, of the human capacity for giving mental form to physically sensed perceptions, so as to "hold them" in metaphored "mind space" for comparison and weighing with others as substance for decisions about actions aimed mostly at instinctual satisfactions.
Although right brainers, typically female, perform these mental calculations almost instantaneously, like Google with an immense data base, and appear to spontaneously "decide" or "conclude" or "have an answer," which seems to them to "just come," or automatically appear in awareness–and furthermore to be "right" or correct, without reasons or outside corroboration–left brainers, usually male, are more limited in our thinking, in use of de-coded images–that is, concepts which translate images into left brain language.
And, because such translations require time, left brain based "reasonable" decisions must be, in effect, "made" rather than "allowed" or accepted as though they "come to you," they are both slower and often in need of external verification.
Furthermore, because concepts are formed from images–that is "made" or constructed from "figments of imagination," a wealth of discrete images ("the more the merrier") is useful for increasingly more accurate concepts (answers, explanations, reasons). Consequently left brainers often become diligent in image-collecting, such as photographs (visual images), facts (mental images), principles (orderly groups of facts, logically arranged), or rules (structured principles).
(As Jack Webb repeated often in an old TV series: "I just want the facts, Ma'am.")
Right brainers, in contrast, who are moved by image powers, that is, energies spontaneously generated by multiplied perceptions from all directions (spherical versus linear existence) rather than concepts, have far less need for reasons, facts, answers, or other forms of left brain concepts. Consequently their seemingly spontaneously "just know" conclusions and/or decisions are inherently more powerful, without need for external verification, as are concepts based on "facts."
Better concepts literally need as many images as possible. But even then, when all available information ("facts" or knowledge) is considered, still they lack the multiplicity of input as well as power of any right brain "knowing."
GENDER AND BRAIN
GENDER AND BRAIN IDENTITY
Typically, males identify ourselves with left brain capacities, and females with right brain functions. Consequently, we tend to develop abilities we identify with, such as, men with left brain logic and sense-making, women with right brain "feelings" and "wants," and both to leave our other hemispheric possibilities limited, even denied or repressed, as though they are "not me."
One predictable result is an unconscious attempt to re-connect with the missing half of our brain capacities as reflected in one who embraces, even personifies them for us–as in, men marrying our "better halves."
But dis-identification and unconscious attempts to find completion through, in effect, capturing a missing part of ourselves in another person, do not literally stop the functioning of an unembraced part of our brains and capacities based therein. That men, for example, typically try to suppress "emotionality" does not mean that "feeling" capacities "go away" or cease to function–only that we who are not self-identified with them are relatively out of conscious activation and control, and are left vulnerable to "emotional women."
Or, that a woman is more identified with her "feelings" than her "thinking (sense-making abilities)," does not mean that her own left brain rational capacities cease to be operative–only that she will tend not to consciously exercise them and mainly use her "good thinking abilities" to rationalize–that is, justify right brain desires with quasi-logical "reasons." When so, and right brain inclinations are supported with left brain sense, such a woman is easily able to, in effect, think circles around a man yet limited to left brain logic alone.
MEN AND FEELINGS
In learning early in life to repress emotions as feasible in established male roles in society, males unwittingly repress other right brain capacities; but even more significantly, we repress awareness and control of natural powers generated by these attributes.
Repression, of course, does not make capacities or their powers "go away"–that is, negate their existence; but it does, in effect, split a person, leaving him "cut off" from, dis-identified with, and consequently severed in general awareness and reasonable conscious control except by overriding repression.
But the really bad news is what happens with forces still being generated by consciously denied emotions, et al. As is the nature of this psychic process, what is repressed within is inevitably projected without. Internal generated powers pushed from personal awareness are then mirrored, as it were, in external images. Historically, and yet typically today, these common male projections are made onto images of gods and women.
Religious projections--for example, creative powers onto gods, can be temporarily useful, with limited costs to thereafter religious males. As religions are structured (as theology exists), male worshipers may in practice get back some of their projected powers from their gods by certain forms of approved actions, beginning with allegiance to a god's local authorities, plus through performance of various rituals (e.g., prayer) and approved behaviors.
Aside from conscious beliefs, the actual psychic occurrence in religious type projections is that images of gods serve as mirrors for reflecting repressed right brain capacities. What man has denied within himself, he may "see" (imagine-to-be) present in his gods.
Literally, gods are created (imaged) in man's own self-denied image–that is, as reflections "out there" of what has been repressed "in here." What one's imaged-self would be like, were it not for repression within, is projected onto an external god-image, with, of course, possibilities of partial reclamation via certain forms of obedience (e.g., in beliefs and behavior or mind and actions).
GENDER AND THINKING
Early repressions typically begin now, as must have been so in the dawn of recorded history, with boys suppressing right brain capacities, especially emotions and passions, and focusing on left brain options related to language and conscious ideas, while girls, conversely, but to lesser degrees of suppression, remained mostly in touch with and aware of right brain abilities, and minimally concerned with left brain language, except as it becomes useful in effecting right brain based directives (e.g., rationalizing desires).
While remaining mostly moved by "feelings," females have become adept at using left brain language for personal purposes, but seldom fall into the male habit of solidifying word definitions and, in effect, idolizing language-based concepts and ideas–that is, symbols, such as, words, numbers, money, and concepts like time, speed, and efficiency–all of which left brain oriented males commonly fall victim to.
But in regard to mental activity, following typical identifications with one hemisphere or the other, females tend to major in right brain "thinking" (mostly called "feeling" or "being emotional") and minor in concept analysis, while typical males try to suppress "feelings" and only "be reasonable" rather than "emotional"–that is, to think in words and ideas rather than in sense-based images of sights, sounds, smells, etc.
With a play on words, males typically try to "make sense" of every-thing, while females naturally continue to "be sensing" among all-things. Finally, in extreme instances, males, in effect, unconsciously worship at the throne of language-based "Reason" (make a god of Sense) while slightly less idolatrous females, adore sensations and emotions, and seldom stray far from "doing what they feel like doing" whether or not it "makes sense" to males with other idols.
Finally, taking the words literally, left brain identified males commonly strive to "make (create) sense" out of perceptions, while right brain oriented females try to "be sensitive" to whatever they perceive, rather than to "make sense" and, paradoxically, in the long run, in the larger picture of human life, female "feelings" often turn out to be more "sensible" than the best ideas of sense-making males. Inherited "knowing"–as females tend to exercise, may emerge as wiser-in-time than even the most reasonable conclusions based in male-made knowledge.
MEN AND TREES
In general, females major in "tree thinking," that is, careful sensitivity to what is immediately presented to their senses, and minor in left brain type "forest thinking (forming global concepts)," while men tend to do the opposite. Rarely, except while engaged in typically male activities, such as, hunting, playing competitive games, or engaging in wars, are males as sensitive and observant to immediate surroundings, such as, social circumstances and human relationships.
One consequence is that men are typically inept at "tree talk"--casual conversation about immediate perceptions and personal memories, while women are equally uninterested in "forest ideas" and are far less likely to draw global conclusions about anything.
Even so, global ideas of females continue to exist and be blindly operative as motivational directives and forces, except without moderation and mediation of conscious attention. This, of course, is but the nature of repression which leaves one unaware of dark powers which continue to, in effect, control human behavior.
When one's natural images and their associated powers are partially repressed ("forgotten"), certain images are apparently easier to recall than others, namely, those which have been named with left brain words. And, in general, it seems that visual images (sight pictures) are easier to make conscious than all others (e.g., sound or smell images). What we see ("seeing is believing") seems to make a greater impression (image subject to recall) than, for example, what we hear or smell.
But I say seems to, only because of first impressions; in practice it turns out that sight memories are both most fickle–subject to error and/or later manipulation by present tense images (e.g., a counselor's feedback about childhood sexual situations), and least powerful in actually shaping current behavior, than are other less consciously held, e.g., smell or touch memories. We actually "learn" more, for example, from sound images (music or mother's tone of voice) than from what we see.
And smell memories, e.g., of childhood school rooms, often turn out to be more powerful and accurate than, say, visual memories about size of spaces.
GENDER AND LANGUAGE
Females are typically better at verbal language, and males, with written language. Why is this so?
First, words to right brained females are mental/verbal tools, not honored as such, never sacred symbols, as so often is so with males. Like mops for the floor or recipes for cooking, words are simply one more medium for use in accomplishing female purposes. Hence, like recipes, words may be freely revised, re-defined, or changed at a moment's notice to fit a current emotional "taste."
Left brain males traffic in symbols, mental and physical entities, "sign posts," as it were, pointing to some reality beyond themselves. Symbols are re-presentations, not direct-presentations, which words are created to stand for.
As with words, so with sentences and ideas–that is, like useful recipes, subject to being reshaped and used as needed in thinking or conversation, without regard to rightness or objective meanings. In psychological language, this is rationalization as contrasted with reasoning.
Across gender lines we have different primary agendas underlying words and ideas. Females typically use language to make and keep harmonious connections between themselves, other people and the world in general. Men, in contrast, most often use language to make and prove points, more aimed at establishing and maintaining independent existence (self-as-apart-from rather than self-as-apart-of). In metaphors, men strive to be King of The Mountain; the Big Cheese who stands alone; dominant supremacy rather than submissive harmony; standing out rather than fitting in.
In service of these differing urges, men are more geared for competition than cooperation, aggression than harmony, war than peace.
When sharp points are made in conversation, right brained women quickly move to dull or erase them in quest of keeping connections, just as surely as left brained men seek to exaggerate their own points and undercut those of others (opposite of preserving cooperation and harmony); or conversely, if male talk ever approaches emotional intimacy or closeness of connections, men typically retreat quickly to point making, "objective," word-based data, useful in competition and preserving independence, rather than cooperation and connections.
But whereas the actual content of held right brain images, being sense rather than language based, may be far greater, they may appear to be smaller–as though right brain oriented females are "less conscious" than left brain males who possess a large number of "facts (language-based information)."
Point: Right brain oriented females may in fact remember more–that is, hold greater amounts of perceptual data in mind space; but because communication is typically done with words, requiring complex sense-images to be translated into simpler word images, they may appear to be less conscious.
And, in contrast, because left brain oriented males may easily hold more language-based (word-able) data in mind space, we may appear to be more conscious.
Bottom line: Left brainers may appear to "know more," since their knowledge is formed from language-based images, but right brainers are often "more knowing," even if their sense-based images are difficult to reduce to word pictures.
Females are more verbal than males, that is, talk more/better, perhaps because they are less restricted by dictionary definitions of words, that is, freer to use new or multiple meanings for any word. For them, language is more flexible, even slippery, rather than rigid and defined, as is so often so for men who take "their word as their bond."
Also, females are typically more identified with their "feelings" than their "thinking," their emotions than their ideas, their "heart" than their "head," including words used to express themselves. Their sense-of-self is not tied to factual accuracy or objectively provable points or statements.
In practice this means their personal integrity is not tied up in "objective" facts. Unlike males who may unconsciously worship "objective truth"–whether in religion, science, or daily life–that is logical, language-based, correct answers (explanations, "understanding"), similar devotions to "emotions" are not effected by "logical answers"–that is, language-based, worded images.
Furthermore, underlying personal purposes in talk (connections versus points) radically effect how conversations are structured, with far greater freedoms available in female modes. Also, females have greater incentives for on-going conversation than do males with motives more aimed at closure as quickly as possible, than at extended verbal connections.
Dictating rules of sequential logic, objectively provable "facts (data)," rather than affirmation by "feelings" only further serve to make male conversations more difficult.
Contrasting values of males and females in conversation include:
– Answers versus stories.
– Dictating rules of sequential logic, objective provable facts, versus affirmation of emotional dramas, descriptive stories.
– Complaints taken by females as "bothers" versus males for "sucking it up."
Right brained females often think (as best I can tell) and talk (of this I am more certain) in superlatives, such as, the absolute best or worst in whatever, as in, "This is the worst meal I've ever had," (plus always and never, as well as other exaggerations of time, space, measurement, quantity and quality, etc.), not because the words are accurate according to dictionary definitions (as males typically try to be), but rather because powerful sensations and/or emotions, which females often feel and identify with, do indeed need powerful words to express them–even at cost (mostly to males) of literal inaccuracy, or, as males may judge them, to be "gross exaggerations" as seen from a rational, left brain perspective where accurate language is relatively sacred, certainly not to be abused with obviously unreasonable, illogical exaggerations either plus or minus.
FALLING IN LOVE
Perhaps the most overall and significant consequence of split brain existence is the stage set for romance and "falling in love"–a dark, socially accepted, near universally affirmed psychic phenomenon in which illusions of personal wholeness are temporarily created in the presence of another person.
The strongest, and ultimately most dangerous forms are left brain males "falling in love" with right brain females, in unconscious attempts to capture a "missing half" externally.
Ecstatic delights inherent in feeling whole, often for the first time since childhood when repression began, easily cloak the illusion on which they are based.
MOONLIGHT AND ROSES
Romantic honeymoons, often filled with ecstatic love making, are, however, as all know, notably short lived, just as illusions of personal wholeness quickly dissolve in "daylight and dishes" phases of extended relationships.
The deeper tragedy of wholeness illusions created by "falling in love" and briefly enjoyed before "reality sets in," is, unfortunately, not ended when the honeymoon is over. Currently evolved social structures, including monogamous marriage, community property, "family values," and political success, are typically based on fragile foundations of illusions inherent in romantic love, rather than realistic considerations. Then, after degrees of unrepression and clearer thinking emerge in the relatively social security inherent in, for example, monogamous marriages, the circumstantial die is cast. Long term physical webs of short lived romantic love are notoriously difficult to unweave.
Falling in love is, of course, not an exclusively male phenomenon; females too are wooed by romance. But in comparison, the nature of "love" which males "fall in" is observably different from the type more common with females. We both may "fall in love with each other," but on analysis or in time, distinguishable natures of each may become more apparent.
In general, romantic love "sickness" of left brain identified males is far more lethal (deeper, unconscious, long lasting, and spiritually devastating) than corresponding female romantic leanings. In terms of time, wives, for example, typically recover from shared "falls" far quicker than love sick husbands.
This is because, I analyze, female motivations for marriage, beginning with "falling in love" are based more in reality than fantasy, e.g., a "good man" to supply a few sperm and longtime support and protection for mothering responsibilities in self replication–that is, tangible necessities as contrasted with emotional needs. Right brained females are more in need of hands than heart, and, of course tangible help is easier to find than emotional salvation.
"Love" of right brainers is consequently more realistic and less personally dangerous than that of left brainers unconsciously in quest of "heart (right brain capacities)" and/or a mother-replacement goddess to "take care of them" (as an idolized mother may have once done).
Obviously female desired physical services (e.g., sperm and support) underlying "love" attractions, are more realistic than male fantasies of "being made whole" by a woman, but even right brain type romance fantasies, as reflected in romance novels and/or desires to "be romanced" by a desirable male are, I observe, more often a product of conscious fantasy than unconscious longing–that is, even though unlikely to be realized in actual life, such "day dreams," e.g., about proverbial Knights in Shining Armor, are not as psychically dangerous as dark beliefs in idolized lovers.
Consequently, even though disappointed that pre-marital dreams fail to materialize in men they marry, right brainers are typically quicker to recover, to "settle for seconds," and get on about making the most of a less than ideal relationship.
Disillusioned left brainers, in contrast, are more likely to fall into deep resentment, sometimes reflected in physical abuse, and/or to have affairs or seek divorce in quest of more perfect females who may allow continuation of projected illusions.
Or, in case of husband-initiated divorces, abandoned wives are typically much more realistic in taking care of themselves in property settlements than disillusioned husbands who "just want out" at all costs.
Summary: Although both genders may "fall in love" the personal "fall" of left brainers is typically harder and more illusionary, spiritually consequential, both at the beginning and end of these psychic events which might more clearly be diagnosed as socially acceptable and commonly unrecognized forms of spiritual illness.
MARRIAGE AND BRAIN
Past, or apart from, psychic perversions of natural mating relationships, as in quests for a "missing half (repressed brain hemisphere)" commonly known as "falling in love" and unions rooted in romance, marriage is a potentially functional social structure, primarily for self replication (having and rearing children), sharing resources, labors and responsibilities, companionship, and, of course, ideally, occasional sexual satisfactions.
If a woman's efforts to find herself as a person through relating to a man are misguided, as many disillusioned wives have discovered, a man's blind attempts to find his "missing half" (his own right brain) in a woman are far more likely to fail.
Illusions of wholeness inherent in "falling in love," especially with a beautiful woman, are predictably destined for a short life, often ending soon after the honeymoon is over, because in reality personal wholeness (and inherent happiness) is an individual matter–like individuation itself.
Time cannot but contribute to eventual disillusioning of a man who, like Prince Arthur, fell in love and tried to rescue a Princess, blind to the fact of an external quest for a missing internal "half."
Bottom line: I conclude that the odds of salvation from an otherworldly God, though highly speculative, are better than those with an earthly woman, though the latter may more often be gambled on.
Limitations in male creativity are less related to lack of conscious desires as needed for basis of decision making–that is, perceptual experience transformed into images and concepts, than to lack of will power needed for carrying them out.
Repression of masculine capacities, symbolized as balls and brains–that is, sexually related urges and right brain wisdom, does indeed limit clarity of conscious concepts (Stage 4 of Creative Process); but the more serious consequence is projection of powers associated with instinct activation.
In religions, for example, projections onto gods in the sky or their local representatives (icons), leave men on earth lacking in will power for creative self responsibility–that is, actually living creatively as guided by genetic directives now partially repressed.
Or, even more commonly, as in marriages, male powers generated by masculine genetics (balls and brains) are typically projected–"given," as it were, to already more emotionally powerful wives, escalating existing imbalances in natural powers.
Result: Even with limited awareness of masculine knowledge needed for creative decisions, already partial as limited by repression, males are often further squelched in creative marital life as a consequence of blindly projected powers onto our wives.
Habitual deference, even with partial genetic basis related to roles in replication, is typically exaggerated grandly by psychic projections more related to personal creativity than to genetic pro-creativity–that is, less about smart sex than male cowardice in the presence of our wives.
For self clarity, I also note that operative wimpism (automatic deference, "giving in" habitually) is often cloaked, as in my case, by illusions of self-righteousness (being a "good" and "loving" husband) and degrees of cloaked rebellions, as in, acts of resistance to total compliance (e.g., "forgetting to pick up after myself").
So called "love," the type we repressed males often "fall into," is typically accompanied by (synonymous with?) massive blind projections of personal powers which would otherwise remain available for creative decision making by males as persons rather than dedicated wimps (husbands without balls).
Male creativity, primarily fueled (powered) by masculine instincts, mainly lust ability, is typically short-circuited by self repression, beginning with genetic male desires (symbolized by balls), but quickly spreading to right brain capacities (e.g., spontaneous decision-making rooted in genetics and personal experience), with retreat to and identification with left brain capacities, notably, words/language/concepts and sequential, logical "thinking" based on mental word-based images.
Result: Split brain living; left versus right brain; "thinking" versus "feeling," with creative decision-making ability severely damaged in the process.
With repression, powers naturally generated by male instincts (notably, lusting) and creative decision making are projected outwardly, leaving men essentially without balls and whole brains, which, of course, seriously limits us in creative living.
Powers are typically projected onto: 1) Sky gods (Jehovah, Allah, etc.) and their earth priests (local religious authorities); 2) Earthy goddesses, beginning with mother and later expanded to women and wives; 3) Left brain images (concepts of mind) created from: words/language/ideas, plus numbers. In language, names are picture representatives or sight symbols, while numbers quantify names. Left brain images typically include:
– Things in space and time, rather than reality-as-process. Spin-offs include concepts of cause and effect. In this series of concepts, if things (or entities, being still or "dead") move in space and time, then some outside force must cause this effect.
– Sequential, linear, or "train track" mental activity, versus circular, all-inclusive thinking.
– Conclusions about right and wrong, "knowledge of good and evil," versus situational ethics. In left brain linear thinking, things (perceptions) are either this or that, but not both/and as is possible in comprehensive right brain thinking.
In biblical imagery, Adam, symbol of man, opts for the tree (named, rigid entity) of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, rather than remaining flexible like snake-identified wo-man (named Eve).
– Concepts of time and numbers reflect in additional concepts of speed, winning, and efficiency–that is, moving fast ("hurrying"), getting there first or being on top, and doing either with as little energy or effort as possible.
– Beliefs, called as such in religion, but operative as principles, rules, "right ways," etc. in secular life, which signify stoppage of on-going thinking, settling, as it were, for frozen notions or concepts, usually acquired from outside one's personal thinking.
Consequences of left brain male idolatry of concepts include:
– Downside is male left brain identification; upside is good for technology, education, etc.; but major loss is creativity, which is typically projected onto gods and/or women (right brain capacities); secondary loss is in pro-creativity, typically projected of old onto gods (e.g., Abraham in bible) and presently onto women for "turn on" abilities.
– Wonder/awe are by products, attributes of, creativity in action; but judgment stops creative thinking.
– Creativity is whole brain decision making, instant-to-instant, always de-ciding, that is, continually perceiving, computing, and opting for actions–verbal/physical.
– Awe is the natural human condition, that is, standing naked in the face of the unknown, as in, Adam and Eve before God–"naked and not ashamed." Full presence is "awe infinitum."
– Wonder, as in, "excitement" = "wonder what will happen," that is, open to reality as continually evolving, changing constantly, even if too slow to see.
– Certainty is unnatural, only available outside the "real" perceivable world; in reality (literally) life-is-uncertain, a statement like, "God is love," that is, reversible (Love is God). Uncertainty is not simply an attribute of, but is the very nature of life. Uncertainty/mystery is but another name for life. The two are synonyms.
BRAIN AND MARRIAGE
Common wisdom notes that "opposites attract," and that marriages based on romance often unite partners with sharply different traits, values, and modes of coping with life in general.
These obvious differences have been variously explained, e.g., as complementary personality patterns in which one seeks wholeness or balance by acquiring a "missing half," as might occur between one dominant and one submissive person, or a "loner" and a "people person."
Although such observations obviously have merit in describing typical marriages, I think deeper analysis might reveal unconscious attractions rooted in brain identifications, that is, between left brainers and right brainers.
Perhaps physical attractions between males and females might be paralleled by psychic attractions in which we seek to become whole brained as we once were before repression resulted in split brain living, that is, with sense-of-self identified with one or the other brain hemispheric functions.
RELATIONSHIPS AND BRAIN
Although there obviously are many degrees of "brainerness (right or left)" and hence many types of relationships between them, often real "opposites attract," that is, an extremely left brainer will relate to, even marry, an equally affirmed right brainer. When so, here are some of the issues which may predictably arise:
– First, when "falling in love," left brainers are often in quest of their own right brain as may be unconsciously "seen" projected onto a right brain spouse. Right brainers may also marry left brainers for mental balance; but when the right brainer is female, deeper reasons are more likely to be for security in family rather than left brain needs.
– Such hidden agendas may stabilize a union over time, especially when supported by child rearing responsibilities and/or financial dependence.
– But if either partner grows--emotionally, e.g., a man embraces more of his own right brain within himself, or a woman gains her own security, as in a job or profession of her own, the balance may become shaky.
–If either gets truly honest, past these and other hidden agendas (psychic uses of a partner), the relational system may be threatened.
– True honest intimacy, where such opposites meet, is relatively impossible except to the extent one or the other moves from brain stasis--that is, from rigid identification with one side or the other. This is because confirmed opposites literally can't meet without threat to established self-survival modes. Intimate meetings–not as role to role, but heart to heart, require that one or the other, ideally both, be willing to move from established securities, as in, right or left brainedness.
A right brained woman is a power to be reckoned with, later if not sooner, especially by a left brained man; but a right brained man, though an initial delight to a right brained woman, is pathetic to a left brained woman.
Wiser left brain men talk to right brain women, if at all, for making and keeping connections, plus occasionally conveying information pertinent to the relationship and shared goals; but they never try to make points with words or to get a right brained woman's understanding verbally.
Not that such a man's intentions may not be good, his points relevant, and his need for female understanding significant; but that words (verbal communication) turn out to be extremely problematic between the genders when self identifications are opposite. When so, most advantages are stacked on the right brained female side of this wide gulf.
Among these significant differences are these:
– Right brain identified females are typically as opposed to point-making as are males to trying to make points. Their circular, inclusive mode of thinking, in sharp contrast with the more typical male mode of "taking aim" and focusing in, like a hunter after game, is inherently opposed to such left brained male efforts.
This difference is not normally problematic when there are no contradictory desires and talk is mainly for keeping connections; but, by nature of the way lines and circles work (using a geometric metaphor), inclusive type thinking and hence wording, all too easily encompasses and consequently erases or defeats lined up, worded points–especially when a right brained woman is the least bit inclined to do so.
– Because natural male talk is typically competitive, aimed at winning verbal exchanges, rather than making and keeping connections by including all possible points, we left brained males commonly find dropping this way of talking difficult to do with females who naturally oppose such verbal exchanges. All too easily we become combative with females, as we commonly are with other males, and unwittingly break cardinal rules of connective talk, such as: share data for making connections, but never compete about different information, since "arguing" may disrupt harmony.
– The nature of typical female self-identification with the right rather than left brain, "feelings" rather than "thinking," results in dis-identification with words–as is more common with men. Whereas males commonly bond ourselves with our words, females rarely make such an identification; instead they tend to think of their "feelings" as I and words as things to use.
Consequently, females have greater freedom with words, e.g., to assign meanings at will, and to change them easily to fit current "feelings." It is this freedom which makes talking to right brained females when there is any point of difference extremely difficult, if not dangerous, for a man who is identified with his "thinking" and limited to dictionary definitions of words as well as logical "sense."
Easily, at times of disagreement, right brained females can drop "sense-making"–that is, using words literally and in logical order, in favor of substituting emotions instead ("I feel like that is not true," for example). Since left brained males rarely acquire this freedom, our words, ideas, and conscious thinking are continually vulnerable to defeat when females drop reason in favor of "feelings."
Conversely, left brained males (self-identified with words and "thinking"), are typically "uncomfortable" with "feelings" and consequently bothered, even threatened, when females "stop being reasonable," leaving "sense-making" in favor of "emotional thinking."
It is as though, in times of disagreement, females hold a trump card in their secret ability to drop word-oriented, logical thinking, in favor of "getting emotional"–that is, moving from logical sense-making to wielding emotional powers which easily defeat even the best of orderly ideas.
I sometimes place quotes around "feelings," to indicate a distinction from literal, physical emotions. Because the word thinking has come to be commonly used for left brain, word-oriented, conscious mental activity (as may be taught in school), as distinguished from right brain based knowledge which is typically "felt" rather than "thought out," we have no accurate name for such "dark knowledge"–that is, right brain mental activity. But because actual emotions are mediated to awareness via right brain connections, we have come to use the term feelings for all such non-verbal knowledge–which may literally be far more comprehensive than simple emotional data.
Point: when a right brained woman "gets emotional," as viewed from a left brained male's perspective, that is, begins to bring "feelings" into the conversation, this does not necessarily mean she has "quit thinking," as may be true for men who "let their emotions get the best of them" and are tempted to fight rather than argue with ideas.
In fact, when women begin to include their right brain "feelings" in a conversation (which men mistake as "getting emotional" rather than "being reasonable") they may actually be expanding mental activity from limited, left brain logic ("lighted knowledge"), to include comprehensive, right brain, "feelings" or "dark knowledge."
When so, when a woman's verbal, left brain "sense" is expanded to include her non-verbal, right brain knowledge (called "feelings"), then her powers of logical "thinking" may be expanded exponentially. She may then become able to literally "think circles" around male type "thinking" which remains limited to wordable, left brain logic only.
Powered by embraced emotional capacities and armed by comprehensive right brain knowledge (e.g., perceptions and sensations, plus memories of past events) she may become, in effect, super-logical--that is, skillfully able to present a wide variety of data which reasonably overcomes or defeats a man's limited, word-based, left brain "thinking."
Even though she may normally hold her right brain "dark knowledge" in reserve while talking (or listening) to a man who prefers to "be reasonable" rather than "getting emotional," in times of conflict her wealthy "dark knowledge" may be brought into the conversation, giving her, in effect, an unfair advantage, allowing her to surround and overwhelm his fragile "thinking." She may, in effect, "out-reason" him by presenting quasi-relevant and/or semi-logical data he is not immediately able to counter with points of his own.
– One further male limitation in disagreements with right brained females is their final advantage of not being self-identified with winning or losing. Unlike typically competitive male talk, in which there are always winners and losers, reflective of the combative nature of male exchanges, right brain identified ("emotional") females are typically freed from these constraints.
They can, in effect, "lose" without personal threat. Or, in practice, they can simply withdraw at any point in a conversation ("argument") without "losing face," that is, with no sense of "giving in" or losing, as is true for males. If their many "reasons"–drawn from dark as well as lighted knowledge (right as well as left brain based), cease to be effective, or even if such females simply tire of "arguing," they may easily withdraw by saying, e.g., "Well, you can have it your way," with no sense of personal loss.
Summary: Instead of attempting verbal point-making with women, wiser men let their actions (and gifts) do their talking for them, mostly keeping their tongues in their mouths for other than connective conversation and/or "sweet talk."
Unfortunately, I am seldom so wise.....
In contrast with fragile left brain thinking in right brain identified females, males are more commonly fragile (less developed) in right brain "thinking"–often called "feeling" when unrecognized as another form of mental activity, simply different from logical, language-based, left brain sense-making.
Right brain thinking is comprehensive or circular, rather than limited and focused, like left brain "reasonableness." Unlimited by laws of logic, right brain thinking relies more on pervasive sense perceptions, both external and internal (images, as described elsewhere), than on discrete bits of summarized data as may be reduced to "sense" with left brain logic. Right brain thinking is also in contact with deeper instinctive emotions, as well as ESP, forgotten experience, and amygdala memories. Expression of these pre-conscious perceptions, unrestricted-by-reason, is consequently more like biological emotions than logical sense, perhaps accounting for being seen and named as "feelings" rather than "thinking."
Naming aside, the relevant point here is the fragile nature of right brain "thinking" in typical males who have identified ourselves with our left brains only, thus remaining mentally split, un-whole, and vulnerable to greater powers of right brain thinking as commonly operative in females.
When so, men typically try to protect ourselves from such mental activity–both within ourselves and from females who, conversely, often identify themselves with their own right brain and its modes of thinking, by avoiding its threatening-to-us nature. For example, we attempt to restrict conversation to the limited arenas of left brain "sense," and to suppress or ignore "feeling talk."
Or, whenever right brain perceptions appear, either in our own awareness or as expressed by females, we quickly try to translate them into left brain "sense." "Sense-making" becomes our major mental activity, as we attempt to avoid threatening-to-us right brain thinking. Any mystery, for example, as is common with right brain perceptions, is perceived as a threat to left brain "sense," and consequently seen as an enemy to be eradicated with left brain reasoning--moved, that is, from realms of mental darkness into lighted "understanding."
In a typical male's rush to "understand everything" and avoid all mystery, we often settle for limited or shallow reasoning–easily seen as such by females who are comfortable with mystery and accustomed to considering a more comprehensive circle of data before rushing to a conclusion or making a hasty decision.
Summary: typical compensation for these two contrasting ways of thinking is often sought by relationships between left brain men and right brain women, in unconscious attempts at wholeness through, in effect, capturing one's missing half in another person.
GENDER AND BRAIN
Typically males begin early in life to identify with left brain capacities, and to avoid and/or repress right brain related capacities, to, in effect, set ourselves up for becoming left brainers. Females, in contrast, often begin and remain identified with right brain capacities, and use left brain capacities in right brain support, without either identifying with or focusing on development of left brain capacities per se (e.g., "becoming thinkers").
In comparison, men tend to become more split brained, while women typically remain more whole brained.
But before or apart from these common identifications, actual gender differences below or unidentified with either brain hemisphere do, I think, biologically effect both brain development as well as hemispheric identifications. Specifically, these include differing cultural roles evolved in support of self replication, and underlying capacities useful in effecting these differing roles for mothering and fathering–for example, female nurturing and cooperativeness, and male lusting, aggression, and competitiveness.
In this collection I most often use typical gender identifications for illustrating (males with left, females with right) even though they are sometimes (less commonly) opposite. Many females, for example, are far more left brained than right, and vice versa for some males; but my focus here is primarily on brain rather than gender, even when one may seriously influence the other.
LIVING WITH WOMEN
When left brain oriented men meet right brain oriented women, the fragile forces of "thinking" (primary reasoning limited to this or that) are grossly inadequate for coping with superior powers of "feelings" (right brain forces) which may freely use any notions in support of personal desires.
Rather than abandoning reason in favor of physical forces and/or psychological games (or running away, emotionally if not physically), a wiser man "keeps thinking" but moves on to advanced reasoning which views the "larger picture," including the impotency of basic logic in the face of right brain based desires. That is, recognizing the limitations of "trying to be reasonable" with one who, at the time, is essentially "feeling rather than thinking," he responds accordingly. If words are used, sentences attempt to reflect personal honesty without engaging in vain efforts to "convince," undermine rationalizations, or otherwise "change the mind" of one "just being emotional" at the time.
In general, at such times of difference, non-verbal affirmation of right brain expressions, as in, physical warmth indicative of personal presence, is far more functional than any possible verbal "language."
THINKING ABOUT SEX
Thinking about sex is essentially a left brain function, while passion roots and generated sexual powers (being sexual) are primarily mediated from lower brain stem connections through the right brain.
So when left brainers, typically male, repress right brain genetic wisdom, including replication passions, power, and knowledge, and are left to deal with internal genetic drives via conscious thinking, we exist in a continually precarious situation in regard to self replication (not to mention, social affirmation).
The situation is further complicated by the additional psychic fact that repression is inevitably accompanied by projection, and, relevant here, when one represses internal capacities within him/her self, e.g., when a male denies his own right brain, he tends to "see" it projected onto females who more clearly reveal their contrasting right brain identifications.
Specifically then, such a man's own-but-repressed right brain based passion powers are "seen" (imaged-to-be) in right brain activated females who are then imagined capable of "turning him on"–or "off" sexually. His relatively "much thinking about sex" seems to be fueled and powered (caused) by females and/or various of their body parts.
Furthermore, repressed-from-awareness right brain sexual forces, cut off, as it were, from self identification ("she turns me on"), and, more seriously, conscious abilities for discretion in expression or deception, are left un-managed ("free-floating") and hence subject to easy manipulation by females gifted with male projections in addition to already expansive personal powers inherent in right brain activation.
Male right brain genetic wisdom is about replication, not simply "having sex--"that is, about discriminate impregnation, not indiscriminate fucking "anything that moves," as often appears true for right brain repressed males left with compulsive "thinking about getting some," and/or being "turned on" by assorted female deceptions more related to power than to estrus (conceive-ability).
And, across typical gender fences, females with powerful right brain mediated passions, but repressed left brain "thinking about sex," including conscious discretion related to expressing genetic female roles in complementary sexual expressions, most notably pragmatic attractions for sexually desirable males, are left with "free floating" beautification urges.
Together then, left brain males without replication related discriminations, and right brained females without discrimination about attraction urges, make for perpetually dangerous relational and social situations.
A perhaps even more dangerous and pervasive result of these typical identifications and corresponding repressions is related to right brain mediated emotions including pre-conscious re-actions of fight/flight and anger/fear evolved for primary self survival, plus "higher" emotions related to relational nuances ("emotional sensitivity").
When males are right brain repressed, we also lose conscious acceptance of these capacities within ourselves, which may remain operational, though out of awareness. We then live, as it were, "on top" of denied but powerful forces subject to eruption at any time.
And, as with repressed passions typically projected onto females, so with repressed emotions; denying our own feelings, we then "see" them reflected in right brain females who we erroneously take to be "just emotional" and "not thinking." They then, in effect, bear the weight and wield the power of our human emotions as well as our sexual passions.
When so, such typical males may deeply feel far more than they are aware of, and erroneously imagine females to be much more emotional than they actually are. Cloaked "soft hearted" males "acting tough," may then meet and encounter (even live with) "hard hearted" females who "act tender."
And when females with embraced right brain mediated passions and emotions, greatly exaggerated by typical male projections, exist with repressed left brain reasoning abilities ("conscious thinking"), they live in possession of immense, unmediated psychological powers over repressed males.
Although stronger, and capable of physical abuse (all too often exercised), such repressed males may encounter "weaker" females with even vaster psychological powers for "emotional abuse." A left brain male with a repressed right brain is constantly vulnerable to self damage by a right brain female, especially one with greater degrees of left brain repression. Colloquially, this may be seen as "the fragile ego syndrome" in which a man suffers greatly from a woman's unconscious put downs and other psychic manipulations.
As best I can discern from a male's perspective, these are the most common and consequential of a typical right brain identified female's repressions–that is, conscious denials and attempted negations of actual, inherited female capacities:
Mothering instincts–that is, natural female urges to create life, both literally, as in, genetic offspring, and figuratively, as in, peaceful, harmonious, lush, beautiful circumstances, are abundantly evident and commonly accepted; but the flip side of the make-life coin, namely, make-death, or kill-ability is, as best I can tell, systematically repressed in right brain identified females, at least denied consciously.
Creativity and destruction, like life and death, are, in reality, inevitably linked; there is no one without the other. Even though our most powerful drives are about survival, the "sting" of death (as referred to by Paul in the bible), is rooted, I think, in the "sin" of self repression rather than in the phenomenon of life limits.
Point: Although both genders share urges to stay alive and replicate ourselves, just as major (90%?) of natural responsibility for creating life is entrusted to femininity, with males only necessary for sperm, so, I conclude stronger capacities for both creating and destroying life are genetically implanted in females.
In Hindu religion this capacity is recognized in (projected on?) the Goddess Kali, who is both giver and taker of life, powerfully creative, but also capable of destruction and killing.
But religion and my theology aside, even grandly misinterpreted, I observe a major gender distinction in both regards. Obviously females make babies while males only impregnate. And, again with casual observation, males are far more inclined to overt aggression, as in, fighting, competing, inflicting injury on enemies, even destructive warring. Females carefully protect their offspring as well as themselves, while males typically take chances, live dangerously, and may even seem to not fear death itself.
But beneath these appearances I conclude that underlying repressions cloak deeper gender differences. On the male side, I think that while "emotional (right brain)" repression–useful in most male type endeavors–makes males look/act brave, even "fearless," it only cloaks denied self-caring, typically projected onto females, and allows for easier killing game and/or fighting "enemies (territorial threats)."
In practice, even overtly aggressive males are far more concerned with winning than killing. Once threatening forces submit to domination, animals, including human males, may quickly turn to "live and let live." But female aggression, though commonly covert rather than overt, hidden vs. exposed, cloaked vs. obvious, even "passive" vs. "active," is, I observe, typically more destructive, even lethal in the long run.
While males may turn soft-hearted after establishing dominance ("winning"), females, especially when their offspring or themselves is seriously threatened, may quickly and decisively switch from warm-hearted creativity to cold-hearted destruction–killing without qualms or guilt.
Most males deeply know, I suspect, that even when consciously denied by females, "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned," or, when limited to divisions of property vs. killing, "She gets the mine and I get the shaft," as a divorcing male laments in song.
I think this Kali-like female destruction capacity, counterbalancing more obvious creativity, is further cloaked (consciously denied) by two psychic phenomena: 1) Male repression/projection of masculine powers which would otherwise force female killer-ness more into the open, that is, from covert to overt operation. When males are already systematically deferential, that is, "trying to please," serving, acting like wimps–in effect, inviting covert domination, then females can sensibly keep killer-ness under wraps, held, as it were, for use in extreme emergencies.
2) Easily recognized "fragile male egos" which we males so commonly identify with following self repression, are relatively easy to deflate with minimum female effort, especially by those who embrace "Sophia's Wisdom."
– NATURAL FEMALE SEXUALITY, including inherited instincts for getting best sperm available at times of conception, and capacity for extended sexual pleasures apart from replication drives and/or use of sex-for-power, as in, multiple orgasms.
– FEMALE SUPERIORITY
A third, and perhaps most consequential of all right brain female repressions, may be conscious awareness of superior creature capacities, imbalanced relational powers, and social advantages in cross gender relationships. In combination, these differences make notions of male superiority, even gender equality, realistically ludicrous.
Although this commonly repressed gender fact, further cloaked by male illusions to the contrary (witness: male religions, e.g., created first and superior Adam and second class Eve made from an unneeded Adam's rib as "helpmate") may indeed be positive for civilized life together, even for shared replication success, it has, I conclude, many extremely negative consequences, both for females "in denial" and males in proximity.
Female losses include:
– Satisfaction inherent in embraced personal capacities, beginning with sexual pleasures; but perhaps even more so with acknowledged selfing powers–that is, "feeling good" about acknowledged capabilities, rather than threatened by blindly and erroneously assumed inferiority.
– Unwise use of unrecognized inherited and granted powers, as in, emotional "overkill" of others, especially loved ones, e.g., squelching male capacities deemed threatening or negative, such as, a son's emerging sexuality or a husband's "wandering eyes."
When so, natural wisdom rooted in superior creaturely advantages, may be perverted into a negative force, both against oneself and others. Granted powers which would, if embraced rather than repressed, be a significant asset, may instead be perverted into a costly liability, both for themselves and those they care for.
In practice, assumed female inferiority, as promoted by equally repressed males (e.g., in male religions), and females who fall for such male projected ideas, may "call," as it were, for defensiveness as well as over-compensation in quest of female integrity. Both predictably undercut wise use of otherwise available gender-based powers genetically slanted in female favor.
Female forces and energies otherwise available for enhanced selfing (e.g., sexual and social pleasures) may consequently be wasted in unnecessary, even counter-productive, efforts to control circumstances, as well as those they love.
Most graphic and widespread examples of over-compensation for un-embraced superiority (falsely assumed weakness) include irrational focus on cleanliness, beautification, and overall sexual repression--both personally, in others, and in society.
Self repression typically results in loss of conscious control, along with projection of related powers. In case of female superiority, loss of internal self-control, resulting from left brain repression, may reflect in exaggerated focus on external control in arenas where management is more easily possible–as in, controlling dirt, crumbs, household disorder, as well as lives of loved ones.
When so, personal powers otherwise available for expanded self-satisfaction naturally rooted in genetic capacity may be perverted (projected) into micro-management of outside-of-body circumstances and situations.
In a cliché, natural forces for delights inherent in occasionally "getting down and dirty" may be perverted into unnatural and vastly overrated benefits in consistently remaining "up and clean"–as in, out-of-bed and keeping company-ready household cleanliness.
One possible spin-off of repressed sexual awareness is vast over-compensation on personal beautification–that is, "being attractive" in ways unconsciously aimed at genetic male attraction. With commonly repressed female sexuality, natural beautification–that is, genetic appeals primally aimed at getting male attention, best sperm available, and male supporters, is effectively left "free floating," as it were, engaged in "for itself alone," that is, female pleasure completely severed from natural purposes ("I just like being pretty").
There is, of course, nothing wrong with enjoying any capacity for itself alone, apart from biological reasons, e.g., eating for pleasure rather than nourishment only; but the potential danger and cost involved in such sublimated pleasures is diversion from potentially grander delights and/or abusive uses of natural abilities in destructive power exercise (e.g., "prick teasing," or manipulating "fragile male egos").
"Look but don't touch," for example, as amplified in artfully presented female bodies, smells, and behavior, may be fun in itself; but "overkill" in attraction may be destructive in extended encounters with males already vulnerable because of self repression and projections onto female "turn ons."
Potential costs of compulsive beautification are further amplified when projected past a woman herself and onto all her related surroundings, including house, husband, children, society, and all else she touches.
When "free-floating" drives for cleanliness and beautification are combined, as is typically so when female superiority and sexuality are repressed, negative consequences are magnified exponentially, both with prices to pay by oneself as well as by all related others.
Vulnerability, for example, of personal well being to any evidence of dust, dirt, or household disorder, not to mention any signs of imperfect personal beauty, would be difficult if not impossible for any function-oriented, left brain identified male to even remotely understand.
When disorder and/or evidences of aging can "drive you crazy," female happiness, not to mention, sanity, hangs by a frail thread.
These and other unfortunate consequences may all be traced, via analysis, back to repressed female superiority, including kill-ability and natural sexuality.
CONSEQUENCES OF MONOGAMOUS MARRIAGE
Apart from the many biological and social, as well as personal, advantages of monogamous marriage in the history of civilization, possible negative consequences of such marriages between left brained men and right brained women include:
– Male castration–that is, sacrifice of symbolic male "balls," primary source of genetic male powers, both for self-replication and creative survival in society. Typically, inherited lust-forces may be repressed and projected onto gods and/or wives unconsciously seen as goddesses.
– Set up for overt male religions and covert female idolatry ("adoration"); makes a virtue of symbolic castration, as personified in myths of Cybele and Attis and common understanding of Mary and Jesus.
– Set up for attempted female domination, including rape and physical abuse, plus childhood molestation and assorted sexual crimes.
– Set up for indiscriminate fucking when genetic wisdom focused on sharp discrimination of estrus (conceive-ability) is repressed, that is, rampant brains-in-jeans after sense-in-head is repressed in favor of affirmed monogamy.
– Set up for loss of reasoning abilities, discretionary thinking, in favor of continual vulnerability to "falling in love," that is, continual blind searching for one's "missing half" as commonly projected onto females, or, specifically, quests for finding one's own right brain "out there."
– Set up for female idolatry (unconscious goddess worship) in blind quest for repressed personal male capacities. God worship, I analyze, is a historical and present cloak for more recognizable female adoration. Lust powers, greatest source of male energies, are commonly repressed within and projected without, onto females who are socially granted rights of control, beginning with the incest taboo, continuing in courtship games, and culminated in monogamous marriage where all sexual opportunity is legally handed to one wife forever.
– Sacrificed "brains." More primal sacrifice of male "balls" (accepted and activated masculine sexual drives) is but a prelude to lost mental components of typical left brained male repressions, "sacrificed," as it were, on the altar of "holy matrimony." Although primal male repressions are of lust energies, the secondary element is "mental" rather than "physical," that is, "in our heads" along with "in our jeans."
In order to negate socially unacceptable, pre-conscious desires (lusting for "pretty girls"), males typically begin by "trying not to think about sex," that is, to stop "evil lust" at the thinking level--to, in effect, "nip bodily desire in the bud" of mind. Suppression of conscious awareness, like taking cold showers, may provide temporary relief and safety, but the nature of "not thinking about sex" cannot but spill over into other forces of consciousness, such as, reasoning abilities essential for discretionary expression (or concealment) of natural desires.
When left brained males repress biological lust in quest of social acceptance, such as, "faithfulness" in marriage, we may unwittingly curtail other capacities of conscious thinking, such as, sharp, left brain-type reasoning abilities, "sense making" which takes all available data into account before any "acting out" occurs.
In effect, we may "sacrifice" some elements of "brains" as well as "balls" when we "deny ourselves" in quest of social acceptance, especially as functional in monogamous marriages.
– Set up for female abuse of unequal powers, e.g., emotional domination ("spiritual abuse"); that is, easy management of limited genetic drives in the face of ever-present ("hot to trot") male urges. Control of opportunity (sex whenever) in face of practical use as a power source, makes loss of personal orgasmic pleasures a small sacrifice in face of massive power advantages in "pussy whipping" a husband. A wife, for example, may give up minor sexual pleasures in service of major social powers. In weighing values of sexual pleasure against desires for relational power, obviously needs for male services may override limited satisfactions of briefly "feeling good" in bed.
– Set up for male aggression. When personal desires are thwarted, supporting drives are predictably activated ("sublimation"). The natural hierarchy of male forces evolved in support of self replication is: 1) Sex; 2) Competition ("winning"); and 3) Aggression. Most powerful male genetic drives aim at: 1) Seeking and seducing conceive-able females; 2) Winning out over all other males, and 3) Aggression in service/support of 1 and 2.
When #1 is thwarted (sexual seduction), #2 and #3 predictably emerge in exaggerated, compensatory forms. Sexually "unsatisfied" husbands typically get competitive with sexually "withholding" wives, and aggressive in various forms of rebellion/punishment.
– Sets up males for irrational pleasing, and females for unreasonable displeasing. Primal drives for artful courting in support of female timing for best times for sperm reception are easily perverted into systematic "wife pleasing," regardless of subjects, in effect, transforming otherwise strong males into functional "wimps (weak males)," who in turn undermine a wife's deep need for a strong, protective male.
As he becomes "putty in her hands" she may predictably develop deep resentments about loss of independent male powers unwittingly thrust into her own control. In quest of needed male strengths, such a wife may find herself responsible for a dependent husband as well as his projected male powers.
–Female set up for sacrificed sexual pleasures. Greater female needs for security over sexual satisfactions, including predictable repression of quest for best sperm at times of desired conceptions, leave "faithful wives" in effect, set up for loss of potential pleasures innate in their pervasive sexual capacities.
Sexual pleasure denial in service of greater needs for male possession related to security, must be near inevitable.
And this, coupled with loss of male powers in "pussy whipped" husbands, must make unconscious wifely emotional aggression equally predictable.
What Freud, still partially trapped, I suspect, in his projected "Oedipus Complex"–that is, repressed ambivalence about his own father, dimly saw as "penis envy" in females, was, I speculate, a cloak of his even more deeply repressed fear/envy of woman's womb–that is, goddess powers, as might have been seen projected into a corresponding but deeper "Jocasta Complex" had his own self analysis (unrepression) continued past Laius (the father) parts of the Oedipus myth.
Men, I hold, are deeply attracted to wide hips, big breasts, and hidden wombs, less for genetic concerns with self-replication (as might be occasioned by wide spaces for baby making and succulent breasts for infant nourishment), than for psychological reasons rooted in repression of our own right brains, including access to genetic as well as natural male passions rooted in genetic knowledge.
Contrary to typical male conscious attention to sex, as in, regularly "thinking about it," "wanting to get some," and being "always hot to trot," etc., I conclude that the depth and extent of left brained male sexual repression is second only to our repression of survival instincts aimed at creatively enhancing present circumstances.
Our typical, left brain-based, conscious "thinking about sex" is, I conclude, mainly an unconscious attempt at sublimation of right brain-based desires and their associated powers into safer, easier-to-manage left brain thoughts.
Genetic male wisdom–that is, inherited and acquired knowledge about female estrus, systematic deceptions, and sex for replication, for example, may be repressed within and projected into perseverated type thinking, along with indiscriminate fucking (or at least wanting to) for relief rather than replication.
Natural powers generated by masculine desires may be repressed within our male selves and blindly projected onto females in general, certain of their body parts in particular (especially tits and ass), and onto their conscious permission overall. With these blind, often pre-conscious repression/projections, we interrupt the natural process of individuation–creating our male selves, and "give," as it were, inherited capacities for self-becoming, to our opposite gender, that is, unwittingly become dependent on femininity for embracing and activating masculinity.
When so, conscious "thinking about sex" and/or dark attraction to female bodies, are consequently less rooted in natural maleness than in secret desires for female permission to activate our male selves, even on existential levels of being who we naturally are.
In religious categories, we blindly seek woman's blessings on our evil, replication-related desires and capacities, even for male salvation on earth from unrecognized-as-such female goddesses, similar to religious hopes of heavenly salvation from a male god later.
In brain perspectives, we males typically repress right brain capacities, especially natural male desires and their associated powers, in favor of half-identification with our own left brains, mostly used later for coping with right brained females, if not seeking to capture our blind projections either in marrying our "missing halves" and/or otherwise suppressing/dominating females in general.
In either case, we may leave our male selves un-individuated and unconsciously dependent on female acceptance and permission, if not overt affirmation for becoming out creative male selves.
Natural seductions, as in pursuing and trying to gain favor from females in estrus for replication purposes, may be partially repressed and replaced by attempted psychological "seduction" of female approval, more deeply aimed at permission-to-be than at willingness to "have sex."
In graphic language, as more clearly portrayed in ancient mythology, e.g., myths of Cybele and Attis (and only slightly less cloaked in stories of Mary and Jesus), we males sacrifice our symbolic, if not literal, "balls" on the altar of goddess approval, beginning with silent, pre-conscious submission to the incest taboo (being awarely sexual in the presence of our mothers and other family members).
Later, as consciousness develops, we may begin recognition in mirrors of female faces, e.g., symbolic Mother's Smiles/Frowns (obvious permissions or denials, especially her "No-saying)," and consequently place blame as well as cloaked needs for permission onto mother and others. Still avoiding insight in favor of easier out-sight (obvious rejections), we may believe that they do it to us, rather than seeing that we, in effect, begin symbolically castrating ourselves, even before actual testicles descend in puberty, on unseen altars of female approval.
Many conscious male desires and attempts to "get some pussy," might, on analysis, more clearly be seen as unconscious desires to "get some soul (or heart, or permission to be sexual)," if not saved. What repressed males consciously think of as a "piece of ass" may cloak unconscious desires for a "piece of heart."
And, when denied, "pussy whipping" in which typical husbands bend themselves all out of personal male shape in quest of wifely sexual favors, might more clearly be seen as "soul seeking" following unconscious projection of our right brains onto our wives.
CONSEQUENCES OF TYPICAL MALE REPRESSION
– Ease of social adaptation
Male repression certainly eases the path of movement into social acceptance. Our repressions, in effect, oil the machinery of social and religious conformity to existing structures which do indeed control major portions of everyone's waking life.
By learning early to suppress socially dangerous natural inclinations, boys smooth the difficult necessity of "fitting in," adapting to existing realities, beginning with mothers and fathers, and quickly moving to peer and communal activities.
And, obviously, acceptance by powers that control life-sustaining resources essential to personal existence is crucially important, especially in early years of life when external affirmation is far more relevant than personal individualism.
In the beginning of everyone's life, memes, we might say, reign supreme, and genetic drives are wisely curtailed in their face.
– Technological services
Advantages of typical male sexual repressions for fitting in and, in effect, becoming "good citizens" who exist mainly as willing servants of family and society, are further enhanced by the most common mode of male repression, namely, left brain identification.
Suppressing genetic desires mediated to awareness via right brain capacities is typically facilitated by exaggerated use of left brain based capacities, including language, consciousness, reasoning, and "self control."
So far, so good; probably left brain evolution advanced as language use, including concept knowledge, was needed for managing natural passions in increasingly more complex social structures.
Given emerging gender roles, e.g., male hunting, female gathering and child rearing, men learning to suppress "feelings" in favor of focusing on game and communicating with other hunters via symbolic language was obviously useful. Right brain suppression in service of left brain activation must have played a valuable role in male adaptation to evolving social roles as societies advanced from jungle to city.
But along with left brain utility, a deeper and far more consequential psychic phenomenon must have also taken root, namely, male self identification with pragmatic left brain based functions.
Indeed, the very emergence of self concepts, which Jaynes called an "analog I," may have been rooted in the development of language and expanded consciousness. But however it occurred historically and in the life of boys today, the more obvious fact is that males, far more so than females, come to identify our sense-of-self, who we think we are, with left brain functions in opposition to right brain mediated capacities, beginning with natural male sexual passions.
And, along with many negative consequences, an immensely positive social benefit also evolved, namely, male focus on technological advances, probably beginning with improved weapons as needed for hunting and survival, but expanding rapidly to tools and constructions useful in enhanced survival, especially as related to female values, child rearing, and family comforts.
In a nutshell, male left brain utility and self identification have served civilization well in its grand movement from stone axes, bows and arrows, to beds and chairs, on the longer way to computers and cell phones today. Without male devotions to language, concepts, and conscious sense making (left brain activities), surely technology could not have advanced so dramatically and wonderfully.
But advantages in social adaptation and technology have, I conclude, been accompanied by serious consequences in regard to personal male well being, that is, individual wholeness, happiness, "secular salvation," and creative male life in general.
And, as a spin-off of these male losses in individuation–creatively "being ourselves," there have also been, I think, serious costs for females left to live with left brain identified males (men without balls), and also to societies hindered in forming truly rational structures while caught up in enforcing male sexual repressions.
TYPICAL MALE LOSSES
– Overall: Conscious use and self identification with right brain mediated capacities, most notably, survival and replication wisdom and power needed for creative living in the world as perceived.
These, in largest perspective, include potentially creative abilities to "take care of ourselves" and maximize self replication, inherent in our two most primal instincts. Consequently, repressed males are, in effect, set up for dependency on females who seldom repress many of our shared right brain capacities, to supply our "missing half"–that is, to "take care of us" in motherly fashion (as in early life with an earthly goddess) related to survival instincts, and to, in effect, take charge of, manage, and be responsible for our own repressed sexual drives, including permission for activation.
– Perversion of left brain capacity
Paradoxically, identifying with and focusing on use of left brain language-based capacities (e.g., sense-making or "reasonable thinking") while caught up in denying right brainedness, invites perversion of what is otherwise a considerable asset, namely, a means of moderating primal right brain urges with demands of social membership.
But in the process of right brain suppression, males typically pervert healthy left brain usage into a psychic device for right brain denials. Instead of advancing whole brain operation, that is, balancing "thinking" and "feeling" (sense and emotions), and learning arts of conscious discretion, males commonly commander reason as a weapon against greater powers of emotions (as in, "trying to be reasonable with right brain oriented females more devoted to personal values than to reason based living).
In this common perversion, two serious consequences predictably occur: First, limited left brain capacities needed, even essential, for living well in complex societies and female-oriented relationships, are reduced, diminished, or "drained off," as it were, in destructive internal conflicts, as in, "trying to be a man," to "not be a sissy," and win at all costs–that is, defeat right brain urges with left brain weapons (for example, arguing with women, trying to force them to "be reasonable," in left brain ways).
Mental abilities essential for artful discretion, that is, responsible expression of masculinity in society, are, in effect, wasted in ultimately fruitless attempts to be half brained, that is, to not be right brained also.
Because repression does not make male right brains "go away," and only leads to projection, most commonly onto sky gods and earthly females who we often "fall in love with" and/or marry in unconscious hopes of getting our missing halves "out there," we typically find ourselves caught up in coping with our own shadowed right brain selves mirrored, e.g., in women we love.
Then, inevitably in misguided attempts at maintaining some degree of personal integrity, we end up in conflicts with our right brain lovers, trying to control them (our unrecognized shadowed selves) with left brain logic and/or brute strength, both of which ultimately fail because: 1) powers of lately-to-evolve reason are fragile in the face of ancient emotional forces, and 2) physical domination is small compensation for emotional withdrawal in physically abused wives, and compensating spiritual abuse by rejected lovers is often more costly in the long run than temporary outward victories.
Left brain males may win outward battles with right brain females, via logic and/or physical strength; but superior female forces, including right brain powers along with social advantages, commonly win wars in time.
RESPONSIBLE MALE SEXUALITY
This is an exploration of what I now think about the possibility of left brained males both embracing natural male sexuality and at the same time being responsible members of society, happily effective in personal relationships. I know much about how to be sexually repressed and socially acceptable, plus a bit about irresponsible rebellion and/or "acting out." I am now thinking more openly about merging the two, that is, being honest about male sexuality while equally attentive to social circumstances–that is, artfully mixing genes and memes as I presently understand them.
First I consider likely requirements of achieving this goal. Among these are:
– WHOLE BRAIN
Being naturally male in current society requires (is not possible without) whole brain-edness, that is, being both left and right brained, without identification with one or the other hemispheric capacities, and hence inevitably caught in internal conflicts related to being split brained.
Only to the extent of one's whole brainedness is responsible male sexuality, that is, being our inherited masculine selves, possible.
Unrepressed natural passions, mostly right brain mediated to awareness, "lust," in common parlance, and judgments, "gene-eyes" embraced and activated.
Skills, indeed arts, of deception--that is, ability to consciously be one way and act another, successfully fooling others without any self deception. "Knowing desires" while acting responsibly in mediating between deception and expression, that is, "feeling what one feels" while at the same time "acting responsibly."
These skills are essential because social and religious standards, modes in which current civilizations have evolved, are suppressive of about 90% of natural male sexuality. Repression is so strongly invited, both as virtuous as well as practical, that only high degrees of personal honesty, unrepression of natural passions along with activation of left brain reasoning abilities, can allow one to be both good male and good citizen (or Christian) at the same time.
– SPIRITUAL INDEPENDENCE
This is another name for whole brained, that is, successful individuation, existing comfortably "on one's own," both alone and in company of others, with embraced genetic drives, both for selfing and community, being apart-from as well as apart-of.
Specifically, this means not dependent on either social and/or female approval for "being one's male self,"–that is, dependent on memes, such as, What They Think (others in general) or any woman's being a "missing half" (right brain), supplying "heart" to a left brain man.
Otherwise, or only to the degree of a man's personal wholeness, is responsible sexuality possible.
– IDOL FREE
Only to the extent that a left brained man has ceased idolatry in its many diverse forms will he be able to be sexually responsible. Such typical idolatries are both religious and secular, some conscious, and others commonly unrecognized as such.
Gods, of course, are the most universal of male religious idolatries, that is, images mirroring repressed and blindly projected male powers, beginning with overall creativity for selfing-in-the-world, and extending often to pro-creativity as well, that is, baby making powers.
In older times, before sperm/ova data was understood, even pregnancy-making was seen as a God power (e.g., Abraham and Sarah in the bible); but even now, after biological information is readily available, many men, especially religious types, still pray about possible pregnancies and/or look to gods and religious teachings for permission and acceptable modes of sexual activation (e.g., missionary position in the dark with one wife).
But outside of religion other forms of secular idolatries, seldom recognized as such, continue to be widely practiced. Most commonly, unconscious male idolatry of female "goddesses" cloaked in male eyes as "mothers" and "lovers" and often projected later onto wives who may be outwardly dominated, but yet remain secretly in charge of a man's balls as well as permission-to-be-sexual.
In religious males the same type of goddess worship may continue in slightly cloaked forms of "Mary-olatry" or adoration of the Holy Virgin Mother of God.
Even more common, however, and less recognized, are concept idolatries of left brain identified males, that is, blind allegiance to various left brain concepts, such as, time, numbers, efficiency, winning, fame, wealth, arrival, finishing, and other external goals.
"Being #1," for example, a combination of concepts based on numbers and winning, and rooted in natural urges for self replication, commonly becomes "free floating" in a repressed man's psyche, completely unattached to real facts of daily life, including desires for offspring. When so, a man may unconsciously worship at the throne of "Number One," even at expense of sacrificing other consciously held values (e.g., knowing "it's just a game").
The same type of unconscious concept idolatry is evidenced in typical male devotions to speed, efficiency, and arrival ("finishing a project"), all the way from an orgasm to any task.
Many men who may appear to outsiders as being "pussy whipped," that is, living with deference to wives in secret quest of sex, and may even prefer to see themselves that way, might more clearly be seen as "heart whipped," more in hidden quest of their own right brains than for permission to "get some pussy."
BODY AND BRAIN
On further reflection I see that the existential issue is deeper than brain hemispheres and their possibly related personal capacities, such as, "feeling" and "thinking" as identified with right and left sides of the brain. I have, till now, mostly used right and left brain as metaphors, since most of the actual connections between brain circuits and personal capacities are yet to be established by research. I have taken emerging science and jumped to make huge speculations about where certain human capacities may be rooted.
But issues of being are, I surmise, more primal than distinguishable human capacities, such as, "thinking" and "feeling," as I have identified with left and right hemispheres of the brain, or even with instincts for survival and replication. Perhaps existential matters are more primally related to survival urges than to sexual concerns; but still, as best I can tell, being itself is, at least in mind's eye, distinguishable from inherited "drives" to "stay alive" and "make babies."
The historical way of confronting these discernable distinctions has been to place them in different mental categories with only minimal, temporal connections, such as, body and soul (or mind, self, or simply I or me). Names for the existential "part" have varied from time to time across history, and from perspectives of religion, psychology, and secular thought; but in common they have been language forms (names) for distinguishing being from matter–as specified in body. Or, in broader categories, physical (body) has been seen as one "thing," and mental or spiritual mind or soul, as a separable other, with, of course, the latter taken to be most important, to matter more, and even to be "everlasting" rather than temporary as body obviously is.
In this now common understanding, in general body is assumed to be one thing and mind or soul something entirely different, with self identifications ("who I am") attached to the latter rather than the former. Body, in this familiar perspective, is simply the physical place or container for what "really matters," namely, an immortal (not-mortal) soul; or, if one is not religiously oriented, soul becomes mind and/or self. But, whether religious or secular in one's orientation, the physical (body) and the spiritual or mental (soul or mind) are commonly taken to be clearly distinguishable entities, with the latter being "more important" and the source of existential concerns (matters of being).
On the surface or in casual thought, these commonly accepted distinctions are obvious and easily understood by any attentive person. Anyone can recognize, even without serious sense-making, differences between "my body" and "myself"–that is, between tangible things, such as, "skin and bones," and apparently intangible "things," such as, "me," or between physical experiences, such as, bodily pain, and mental or spiritual experiences, such as, grief and heartache.
Easily then, one can go the next step in reason and conclude that these different types of human experience are rooted in different entities, and draw the logical conclusion, based on personal knowledge, that "inside" matters (of "mind" and/or "heart") are far more significant than "outside" things, such as, "my" body. What I have (or am in), namely, my body, is obviously less important than who I am, namely, myself as distinguishable from this mortal "container."
Point: whether from commonly accepted socio/religious perspectives passed on from one generation to the next, or from immediate personal experience quite apart from what one hears or learns from others, distinctions between body and soul, tangible and intangible, physical and spiritual (or mental) are obvious and easily understood and accepted by anyone who pays even the slightest bit of attention to human experience.
All this attention to "common knowledge," whether "learned" from others and/or personally recognized by oneself, is to set a mental stage for making my uncommon observation that the above perspectives are only true on the surface or in casual understanding. Deeper analysis, I conclude, reveals an existential error in thinking that body and soul–whatever they may be called, are actually separate, distinguishable entities, with the latter mattering more than the former.
My conclusion, obviously at odds with "common knowledge," is that past or below these accepted and understandable observations, body and soul (or mind) are not existentially separable. Literally speaking, I am embodied, that is, in the final analysis, self and body are actually one. I do not have a body, or exist in a body (either temporarily or permanently), but rather am embodied.
This existential fact, as I understand reality, is typically cloaked by two common forms of repression initiated early in life for ease of coping with existing external reality, namely, by repression of "thinking" and/or "feeling," that is, of left brain or right brain-based capacities. Some children learn to cope best by repressing conscious think-abilities (left brain sense-making), while others survive by repressing feel-abilities (right brain based sensitivities, emotions, and deep bodily instincts).
After these typical modes of self-repression, we predictably come to identify our sense-of-self (who we perceive ourselves as being) with the less repressed "parts" of inherited capacities. I, for example, learned early to cope outwardly by use of my left brain "think-abilities," and consequently repressed my right brain "feelings."
Most commonly, I observe, I am typically male in this form of self-repression, while females usually opt for the opposite form of repression, namely, of left brain sense-making. After self repression, depending on which general mode is "learned," we predictably identify with the mode taken, and "see" contrasting capacities (rooted in the opposite hemisphere) as "not me." Consequently, most males identify ourselves with our "thinking" or our "minds," while females commonly identify who they are with their "feelings" or "heart."
Obviously these contrasting forms of typical repression with predictably different sources of self-identification become ingrained in society and often work reasonably well in our complementary relationships in marriage and family; but, and this is the relevant point here: these limited self identifications–men with our minds, women with their hearts, also result in cloaked awareness of bodily unity–that is, being embodied, rather than believing in body and soul, or "having a body" apart from who-one-is.
One unfortunate result of these typical modes of coping (with "thinking" or "feeling"), other than lost awareness of personal unity, is an oppositional stance to the part-of-self one has opted to dis-identify with. In order to continue and support an established mode of repression, we typically "put down on" and/or "feel threatened by" capacities we have denied within ourselves–that is, the un-embraced elements of our whole selves.
I, for example, like a typical male, have learned to repress right brain capacities (my "feeling side") in favor of identifying who-I-am with left brain "thinking." Consequently, I am left "emotionally" repressed in most circumstances, compulsively focused on "thinking" (making sense of what I perceive), and generally threatened by my denied feelings as well as powers of those who identify with what they "feel" rather than "reasonable" thinking.
Because "emotions" and all elements of right brain capacities are more related to body than to mind, that is, to how one naturally feels rather than what he or she thinks, those who identify with "feelings" also tend to exist as more embodied (moved by internal forces), even while consciously thinking of "having" or "being in" a body which is not seen as I or me.
– Dis-embodiment, following emerging consciousness and brain-splitting, with creation of an analog "I,"–that is, an illusion of existence as a separate "self," "soul," "I," "me" or "ego."
Names for these useful language creations vary from older religious concepts of "soul" to later words like "self," or internal, often un-worded "feelings" of "I" or "me" as an entity either in or out of "my" body.
In summary, with or without language to represent the phenomenon, and/or conscious awareness of this primal split, following repression one may exist as though dis-embodied, or as an entity apart from being embodied. Most commonly religions view this division as between "temporal body" and "eternal soul." Later to arise psychology (literally, soul-knowledge), dropped religious concepts of "soul" in favor of more secularly acceptable names like "self" and "ego."
But even outside of religion and psychology, following (or concomitant with) repression, average humans often come to perceive and represent the same divisions (dis-embodiment) with notions of a literal "I or "me" as distinguished from "my" (note possession) body as "it."
I speculate that this primary, near universal, human splitting, whether seen as between body and soul (physical and spiritual) in religion, body and self (physical and mental) in psychology, or simply it and I (them and me), in average citizens, is physiologically based in brain-splitting between right and left hemispheres–another illusion with profound consequences made possible by consciousness and "self" identifications with one or the other.
Before amplifying this speculation, I affirm the natural recognition of distinctions between internal and external perceptions, including awareness of differences between individual and communal existence (being one among others, as well as existing apart-from along with a-part-of the perceived world. On the individual level, these natural distinctions begin with each infant's growing awareness of individual existence, that is, personal movement from life-as-though mother/me is one entity, to the rapidly emerging perception of distinctions between "me" and "mother," et al.
And, with the emergence of left brain based language, and "thinking" with words and sentences, plus the use of verbal communication with others in quest of instinctive satisfactions, the necessity for nouns to make "complete sentences" becomes essential. In this natural function of using language as a tool for enhancing survival, such names as "self," "soul," "I," and "me," are functional, even essential.
But the distinction I am attempting to clarify is not simply about language--names, and ways of thinking and communicating. Although often reflected there, the division (splitting) I observe is within the essential nature of who we humans are, both before and after consciousness and language become possible.
This split is existential, that is, related to being as distinguished from any "thinking" or "speaking." Even personal awareness is not required for such an existential division to occur; indeed, "repression (my term for the process of internal splitting)" seems easier and more likely apart from any conscious awareness. In colloquial language, this near universal split seems to occur best and most completely without "thinking about it," that is, "unconsciously."
Point: After language is acquired, one may naturally think and speak in terms of self, soul, I, and me, without internal repression; or conversely, one may be severely split within and have no conceptions, conscious thoughts, or ever speak of such named entities. But in either case, the reality of existential splitting is to be distinguished from conscious thinking or any language used to express personal awareness.
Although we as yet have no accepted measurements (scientific gadgets) for determining more than rudimentary functions of brain hemispheres and/or degrees of "splitting," I imagine that eventual research and technology will confirm my speculations, which are:
– Existential human splitting, reflected in language and conscious thinking about body and soul in religion, body and mind (and/or self) in psychology, I and me (or it) outside of religion and psychology, or as colloquially expressed in recognized distinctions between heart and head or feeling and thinking, are all physiologically rooted in imagined splits between left and right hemispheres of the human brain. I say "imagined" only because the divisions are mostly "in mind's eye" rather than biological (physical) facts; insofar as functional reality is concerned, that is, the ways we actually live our daily lives, these internal splits might as well be physical realities. We mostly exist as though they are "the gospel truth."
– Although existential splitting due to internal repression is ultimately about personhood or non-gendered aspects of human beings, in practice the imagined–though functional, divisions are largely accomplished along gender lines–with males splitting off and identifying ourselves with left hemisphere functions, and females remaining largely connected and identifying with right brain capacities, while repressing (to lesser degrees) their own left brain capacities.
– Moved by: 1) psychological emotions (fear, stress, anxiety); 2) habitual or learned modes of coping; 3) beliefs, acquired concepts rather than current thinking.
– Non creative, with natural creativity repressed and projected onto gods, circumstances, society, and/or other persons.
I AND IT
"I" and "it" are useful names for different perceptions. Looking at my hand, for example, and at a tree out there, reveals obvious distinctions. My hand is clearly not the tree; and vice versa. But, like other noted different perceptions, they are, once represented by left brain based words (I, it, hand, tree, etc.), essentially mental concepts, as distinguished from physical perceptions. They are "I see's," versus "It is's," potentially useful language symbols, but not necessarily external existential realities.
Relevant here is understanding the fact that all perceptions occur as un-languaged physical experience, for adults as well as for babies before language is learned. After left brain based language, including names for differing perceptions, is learned, mental speed in associating a current perception with a prior acquired name is truly phenomenal, so instantaneous as to seem synonymous as though (note metaphor) perceptions and conceptions are the same.
From the perspective of Creative Process, the actual move from Step 1 to Step 4 (perception to conception) can be so fast that Steps 2 and 3 (emoting and imaging) elude awareness completely. It may indeed "feel like" what is actually a speedily acquired conception is literally the initiating perception itself.
But the language difference is crucially significant insofar as future experience is concerned. When missed, when humans may easily confuse named perceptions (nouns and concepts) with unnamed bodily perceptions–failing to recognize the metaphorical nature of all language (names and concepts as symbols versus what they represent) consequences can be monumental insofar as good living is concerned.
And this error, I conclude, is at the roots of major human problems in most civilizations today, namely, ignoring metaphors and mistaking left brain based names for experience itself–that is, erroneously identifying perceptions with reality, and then living-as-though (metaphor) what-I-see is literally what-is (rather than simply a personal notion based on experience and learning).
I suspect that perhaps the ultimately most dangerous and near universally ignored human errors begin when primary perception distinctions between "I" and "it" are assumed to be literal, physical facts rather than mental concepts, thus glossing over the larger reality of abiding, typically unperceived connections between the two names.
The and between "I" and "it" sets the stage for acting, even sincerely believing, oneself to be a separable entity, unconnected from all "its"–that is, entirely apart-from rather than actually apart-of, but with mental concepts for registering different perceptions (e.g., hand versus tree).
Such seemingly insignificant mental errors, are easily understandable because most of the contents of connections between self and world are relatively invisible to human eyes--like connecting oxygen in unseeable air, internal digestion processes which are continually transforming outside food into inside life, or communal connections with other humans, mediated by external memes almost as invisible as internal genes.
These primal splits between I and its, self and world, shielding us from conscious knowledge of apart-of-ness with illusions of apart-from-ness, become the later basis of feelings of loneliness, isolation, and loss of belonging, as, "children of the universe"–primary mistakes which religions try to correct with images of reuniting with gods (symbols of ultimate reality) later, if not presently.
But more immediately, errors occur when I/it distinguishable perceptions phase into self and body divisions–that is, when psyche and soma perceptions and related concepts are erroneously concluded to be literally separable entities, as in notions of soul (or self) in body.
And, in support of these common illusions, practicing dis-embodiment rapidly ensues–that is, confusing functional metaphors with actual facts, as it were, and falling into metaphorical living, as though "I" have "a" body, rather than being embodied.
I, and its assorted synonyms–me, self, soul, ego, etc., are potentially useful left brain nouns, that is, language symbols required for making complete sentences in English, which are in turn needed for left brain type thinking (not right brain thinking), writing, and communicating with other English speaking persons.
More specifically, "I," along with "God," "Santa Claus," the "Tooth Fairy," "Angels," "Devils," and "you," am/are left brain language personifications, that is, complex combinations of personal perceptions translated into a concept useful for the above noted purposes.
Furthermore, possessive pronouns, such as, my, mine, ours, yours, and theirs, are also functional language symbols, useful for showing perceived relationships between personifications and things (perceived objects).
But, and this is the relevant point here: Insofar as creative, whole brained, fulfilled living (heaven on earth) is concerned, these parts of left brain speech are best used for left brain type thinking and never taken to be literal entities, like rocks, trees, the sun, and other named perceptions.
When this happens, valuable but limited human resources, capacities, and energies are perverted from essential genetic services into support, maintenance, promulgation, and preservation of left brain concepts, literally, illusions.
Although such activities, which may occupy near 100% of a person's waking time, can be socially functional, as related to public perceptions (What They Think), reputation, plus social and political positions, as well as acquiring and keeping truly needed physical resources, such as, jobs, wealth, and, of course, human relationships, they often leave dedicated followers drained, stressed out, depressed, disillusioned, empty and/or physically/emotionally ill.
On analysis, these common perversions of natural capacities may be found rooted in exaggerated focus on, even self identification with, left brain abilities, and denial, even repression of right brain related capacities. Normal whole brained thinking (use of mind in genetic services) may become, in effect, split, leaving one mentally unbalanced, attempting desirable impossibilities (such as, post-death immortality), and negating real options (like, happiness on earth).
Because right brainers remain more self identified with bodily experience, in contrast with left brainers identification with language based concepts, they are less likely to, in effect, become dis-embodied or to perceive themselves as separable entities entirely apart from current circumstances and immediate bodily perceptions.
They are, descriptively, more subjective than objective, or, as left brainers may think, more "emotional" than "reasonable," more "in touch" with their bodies than their minds.
Is dis-embodiment–mind and body, more commonly a left brain male phenomenon resulting from masculine genetic repression, that is, an existential state, regardless of conscious ideas, such as, beliefs in soul and resurrection, and/or permanent death?
And, in contrast, do right brained females simply traffic in male ideas of mind and body while actually remaining bodily identified, that is, find emotional comfort in ideas of, e.g., post mortem re-connection with loved ones, or later connections with Jesus, God, etc., all the while remaining existentially identified with bodily capacities, especially those associated with right brain functions and female instincts?
Do such men "think" mind and body in rational support of illusions of immortality (not-bodied-ness) in compensation for lost mortality resulting from male repression, while right brained women, still functionally embodied, simply use male-created ideas of separable mind/soul/self from body to ease threats of separation from loved ones (as in, being united with family in heaven), but in practice (daily living) remain more fully mortal?
Do such females accept and indulge in male-created ideas of immortality, all the while practicing mortality?
Were male religions born and developed along with the evolution of consciousness and the practice of male repression in deference to goddess powers–as is the mode of existence of every male child in early life?
I suspect so....
BRAIN IN HISTORY
MY WORLD VIEW
I begin with what I see today and look back into world history for what I imagine may have taken place in the past, setting the stage for, and resulting in current situations.
Among my primary observations about "how things were/are " are these:
– Self survival instincts are the most powerful human force.
– Communal instincts are the second most powerful of our pre-conscious motives.
– Self replication drives are the third major power.
– Differing roles in replication are the basis for significant gender differences.
– A major gender difference is creaturely superiority of females, with lesser endowed males primarily evolved for services to child bearers, beginning with sperm and expanding to supplying security needs for successful rearing of offspring.
The primal genetic fact that females have two powerful X chromosomes in every cell of their bodies, while males have only one X, balanced by a relatively weaselly Y, became a major biological difference in the evolution of human civilization.
As evolution moved from millions of years of life continuation via cloning collections of cells to the relatively new form of sexual reproduction, with the female gender given primary creative capacities for baby making and child rearing, and males mostly required only for impregnation, the stage was set for biologically superior female individuals and lesser endowed males to form functional alliances as needed for successful genetic replication–now by sex rather than cloning.
But whereas females, having inherent power advantages to begin with, maintained embodied, psychic connections with natural creativity, including for making babies, already limited males further curtailed self development by repressing right brain capacities, unwittingly projecting associated powers onto male-created, ever-lasting, heavenly gods, and unconsciously, onto ever-present earthly females.
To deal with this dark psychic situation which apparently arose with the evolution of consciousness, males came to create (imagine) super-powered, even omni-potent, male gods, to balance their even darker projection of masculine powers onto already superior local females.
Assumed-to-be omnipotent male gods, held as semi-conscious male image forces in male minds, were needed to confront/combat the more obvious powers of local females as evolving civilizations brought them into increasingly greater amounts of daily time. Unlike ancestor animal "kingdoms" which were structured around a few powerful males relatively separate from female company except for brief times of breeding and other protective services, human males found themselves in far greater contact with their creative counterparts.
Major commonly accepted errors include:
– Illusions of male superiority and/or gender equality.
– Religion as such probably arose with the evolution of consciousness. Initially, in formative stages, its activities may have simply been expressions of primal, right brain knowledge in the context of emerging left brain-based language and discrete thoughts (notions) made possible by developing consciousness.
The Creative Process was, in early eras of pre-consciousness, likely limited to stages 1-3, namely, perceiving, emoting, and imaging. At these phases of human evolution, with consciousness yet in its infancy, physical gestures, guttural sounds, and picture language (image representations) must have been the primary means of communication.
Verbal and written language only became possible with the evolution of consciousness and expanded left brain development.
Emerging civilizations were moved, guided, and structured by pre-conscious, right brain knowledge, that is, Stage 1-3 of Creative Process experience.
In these early eras of evolving civilization, genetically superior females naturally became major guiding forces. Looking back we might summarize these eras of emerging consciousness as "matriarchies," or "goddess times (when God was a woman)." Although there probably was no religion as such during these periods of human evolution, females moved emerging civilization simply by and because of their greater genetic capacities and/or deeper right brain connections.
Lesser endowed males existed primarily in their evolved servicing roles, under the direction, guidance, and permission of child-bearing females. Later to evolve male "kings" were more clearly recognized as female "servants" in these earliest eras of evolving civilizations.
Primal roots of what would much later become "religions" began as serving males, perhaps away from cave "homes" and direct contact with female power on hunting treks, created clay images of big-breasted, wide-hipped, powerful females, as tangible representations of social life as they knew it–maybe to "re-mind" them of guiding/comforting female powers, then accepted as "just the way things are," while they were out of female presence. (Forerunners of pinup pictures and pornography?).
After male religions evolved much later, we may look back and call these remaining clay figurines "goddesses," symbolic of "Goddess worship"; but in practice they may have simply been image representations of existing social structures, useful in evolving male, left brain imaging capacities associated with emerging consciousness.
Matriarchal eras of human history phased out as unneeded and dispossessed groups of males excluded from power and replication opportunities united to form power groups of their own. With greater physical strengths, lesser right brain "emotional" connections (and hence, easier kill abilities), and emerging left brain-based consciousness, these alliances of war-like, dis-possessed males were eventually able to overcome peace-oriented matriarchies.
But outward domination of existing social structures and individual females did nothing to change existing imbalances in genetic powers–that is, biological facts of "female superiority." Power-happy, physically strong, war-making males might be on top of emerging social structures, installing themselves as "kings"–but still, powers "behind the throne" continued to silently "rule," regularly undermining and covertly controlling obvious overt male forces.
Something else, beyond muscular strength in individual males was needed, both for keeping cohesive groups of basically individualistic males cooperating together as needed for "team efforts," and even more so for confronting and defeating female forces, including goddess images and icons of earlier matriarchal eras.
The psychic stage was set for a male-created "religion" as such, with a male god to replace older female goddesses, as well as creating social structures capable of what might today be called "keeping women in their place," that is, in forced servitude to self-proclaimed, god-ordained males (as in Catholicism and other religions today).
Although male-created "organized religions" gradually came to structure emerging civilizations, they were rooted in primal efforts to supplant and control genetically superior females, with newer male gods theoretically capable of overwhelming older female goddesses.
Contrary to current theories that civilizations evolved religions, the reverse, I conclude, is true, namely that male based religions became the primary structuring forces of rapidly evolving civilizations.
Beneath these outward, obvious, social developments (ethnic based civilizations), evolving human consciousness, with left brain language based "thinking," was the deeper, less obvious, guiding power.
And males, with lesser developed, right brain based capacities (perhaps less "emotionally endowed"), quickly came to identify themselves with developing left brain based capacities, beginning with language and conscious "thinking," primarily as a means of coping with older female-identified "emotionalism"–that is, right brain, inherited and acquired genetic wisdom.
Females, meanwhile, continued to live and be moved by older and wiser right brain directives, and to covertly control many overt male activities, including being quietly tolerate of male religions.
The male uprising which eventually led to established patriarchal structures suppressing and replacing older matriarchal forms of social arrangements obviously resulted in functional modes of extended civilizations–else society would not exist as we know it today.
But whether or not my looking-back analysis with speculations focusing on: 1) warring efforts of displaced males banding together and overwhelming poorly defended feminine led groups, and, 2) creation of male religions for added ethical justification for female suppression, is correct, certain consequences, "negative side effects" we might call them today, are yet more observable.
In the beginning of an infant's worldly life, all external powers-that-be are apparently perceived as "Yes-saying." For example, no matter how ugly a boy baby may be, parents and friends say, "Isn't he cute." When he opens his eyes or reaches out, they affirm, "Look, he's seeing me." When he opens his mouth, "Listen, he coos," or if he cries, "He wants his mother"; and shortly, even poo-pooing in his pants is affirmed, "Look, he had a good one."
In this brief world-saying-"Yes" era, there is no need for self-determination ("creating oneself") because all needs are supplied by external selves. All wants are met with "Yes."
Soon however, distinctions appear--personal perception begins to discern between this and that, even her and him; and even more relevantly, "Yes-saying" is sometimes supplanted by "No-saying." Just as a child naturally distinguished this from that, he soon must cope with "No's" in practice as well as "Yeses." "Yes, you are cute," for example, "but 'no' more poo-pooing in your pants," or, "Yes, you may smile and coo, but 'No' to your yelling and crying."
All too soon, powers-that-be, first personified in mother, must be discerned as reasonably as other sense perception, such as, this/that, hot/cold, etc. Concomitantly blue versus pink social distinctions related to gender, that is, being boy versus girl, must also be taken into account.
Ideally, all is yet natural and good, as left brain capacities for sense-making out of right brain sensations (perceptions) emerge to smooth worldly transitions, beginning with pleasing versus displeasing one's mother (e.g., to "go on" potty versus "in" diapers). Whole brain mental activity evolves, enhancing creative world making (pleasing mother) and beginning individuation (self-making) in the process.
But just here, in every infant's Garden of Eden (pleasure), the tempting snake appears inviting "knowledge of good and evil," right and wrong, versus observed this and that, or, as I translate, the use of repression, "self denial," non-individuation, as in, minding-mother versus remaining whole-minded ("thinking for oneself"), swallowing beliefs versus keeping on believing, and consequently coming to limit one's self-making to one side of the brain or the other, as in, ingesting voices of mother versus "hearing oneself thinking"–that is, remaining aware of "voices" of instincts, later to become "voices of gods", etc., even after mother is left and/or dead and gone.
It has long been accurately observed that
"hell hath no fury
like a woman scorned"
But less commonly acknowledged
is the even more consequential fact that
"heaven hath no power
like a woman adored"
Males achieving physical and social domination in supplanting matriarchies involved two inward sacrifices: first, emotional capacities--including tenderness, sensitivity to others, and affinity for peace rather than war, had to be suppressed in favor of killer instincts more related to self survival than self replication and communal cooperation.
In colloquial terms of today, early males had to suppress the human capacity for "heart" and focus on "head" in order to "cold-heartedly" rape and kill female leaders ("Queens") in order to establish themselves as "Kings" in social structures ("politics, law, and business," it would later be called).
This move from "heart" to "head"–or, as current analysis might see it, from right brain orientation to emerging left brain capacities for language, involved a focus on "thinking" over "feeling," reason over emotions.
To succeed in various forms of overt domination, males also came to identify themselves, who they perceived themselves as being, with left brain capacities, and, more consequentially, to dis-identify with right brain "emotional" capacities as were already operative in established femininity.
Secondly, in order to remain securely identified with what we much later have come to recognize as left brain capacities, including maintaining cohesion in male groups needed to centralize power, one other major suppression of instincts was required, namely, of natural male sexuality as evolved for pleasing/serving females in quest of maximum replication.
Instincts for tender, sensual sexuality had to be displaced into tough aggression, both for maintaining male group cohesion, and for overt dominance over more naturally powerful females. Unwittingly (later to be recognized as "unconsciously") emerging consciousness had to also be perverted in self repressions needed for effecting these functional moves to identify with left brain "thinking" and instincts for aggression rather than risking direction by "soft emotions."
But, and here is the most consequential result of repressing natural masculine instincts for "soft" and "emotional" right brain sex, in order to stay identified with "cold hearted" aggression, the second half of repression also became operative, namely, projection of inherent replication-based powers onto the very females they were trying to dominate.
Sociology has long speculated that these differing types brain development were related to differing gender roles related to "hunting versus gathering"–that is, males having to wander from home in search of game, while females remained together, "gathering" food closer at hand and cooperating with other females immersed in child rearing responsibilities. Perhaps so; but I speculate that primal motivations were more related to "fucking" and "making love" than to "hunting" and "gathering."
Back to history speculations:
What happened, I imagine, was something like this:
In order to maintain "team" cohesion essential for overcoming superior female powers, males had to repress natural sexuality which is inherently sensitive/tender as genetically functional in maximizing odds of impregnation, perverting these replication-based capacities into aggression rather than sexuality itself (as in sports today).
The first personal loss was inherent, right brain "emotionality," including its operation in artful courtship/seduction (called "romance" today), with its natural powers perverted into aggression instead.
But the deeper, more consequential loss was natural creativity, which requires whole brain activity–not left brain only. Early male denial of right brain capacities in favor of exaggerated focus on non-emotional, "objective," left brain "thinking," was perhaps the basis of the grandest projections onto male gods, who came to be seen first as creating the world and all else, including sperm effectiveness (as with Abraham in the bible), and then to remain distantly in control of everything which happens.
This primary projection of repressed masculinity served two civilizing functions: 1) it kept males subject to control by socio/religious leaders, and thus held in cohesive "teams" as needed for confronting superior female powers; and 2) it served to enforce and maintain personal left brain activation/identification which allowed individual males to survive in female proximity, as monogamous relationships evolved–that is, establishing a seemingly safer divide between genders, with, as it were, "men being men" and "women, women."
But again, the greatest male loss in the establishment of male gods was personal creativity which requires whole brain operation.
With emerging capacities for human consciousness, probably rooted in: 1) increased needs for male communication in hunting for food, and 2) increased need for chosen deception as civilizations advanced from cave to clans, two major gender differences began to occur. First, males tended to focus on left brain capacities for verbal communication (as needed for groups of hunters, and inter-tribal negotiations); symbolic thinking and language (e.g., measurements of materials and time, as useful in making better weapons and tools; and "sense-making"–that is, use of logic and reasoning, both for making things and alliances, as well as trying to cope with otherwise superior female capacities.
At the same time, and/or in service of improved left brain functions, males began to repress right brain capacities ("emotions") which obviously interfered with, even undermined, success with male type endeavors, such as, hunting, warring, and fucking (vs. "love making"), as well as cooperating in male endeavors (hunting, sports, etc.).
Eventually, this focus on language-based functions and control of "feelings" phased into self-identification with what we now understand as left brain capacities–that is, males came to identify themselves, who they perceived they were, their sense-of-self, with their left brains, all the while denying right brain capacities as a part of who they were, and only recognizing these attributes as reflected in mirrors of females.
Meanwhile, females tended to remain more primally in contact with older, pre-conscious, right brain capacities which they came to identify with, as sell as be empowered by.
And as consciousness capacities evolved, they naturally expanded as whole-brained creatures (larger Corpus callosums) who embraced language and speech abilities allowing for escalated communication among themselves, along with sharper reasoning based on increased information allowed by expanded consciousness–that is, ability to hold more data in mind space ("remember more").
But the crucial fact is that while coming to use emerging left brain capacities, as in, expanded reasoning, they never gave up (suppressed) right brain capacities and their associated powers, nor did they come to identify themselves with left brain only.
Consequently they avoided entrapment in concepts, such as, word definitions, clock time, religious beliefs and/or limited linear thinking. They, in effect, remained more whole-brained, both in operation and identification, while males were becoming increasingly split within themselves, caught up in attempted repression of right brain capacities, along with their generated powers, plus increased dependence on left brain "thinking," as well as self-identified, and trying to live well as, in effect, half persons–with large heads but without heart.
Men were left, as it were, as sitting ducks for unconscious goddess worship, covert female domination, and irrational religions darkly aimed at suppressing femininity and bearing the weight and power of increasingly repressed degrees of male capacities, especially those rooted in right brain connections.
PRE-HISTORY NATURAL WORLD
Major distinctions in the natural human world before most recorded history begins, were different from much current understanding in these regards:
– Humans were whole brained creatures who by genetic quirk happened to be male or female (presence of XY or XX chromosomes in each cell). In language of today, we might say that humans strived for "personhood" rather than trying to be "a man" or "a woman" only.
– Those with two X's, later called "females," were genetically superior creatures ("persons").
– Males with the lesser powered combination of XY chromosomes, existed primarily for "servicing" females, both for conception and support in child rearing.
– Given their greater genetic capacities, matriarchal management of emerging societies existed much like motherly management of households today.
– Whole brain living, as animals still do, was the prevailing human condition–that is, human creativity was primary, and pro-creativity was secondary. With capacities rooted in both brain hemispheres cooperatively united, both males and females were genetically moved first for self survival and its enhancement (which I call "selfing"), and secondly, for "sexing" or activities related to self-replication.
We may think of "survival instincts" as being about "personhood" or wholeness, and "reproduction" or "baby making" as about gender differences. I estimate that 80-90% of human genetic drives are for whole brain living as "persons," with perhaps 10-20% of internal motivations aimed at "making more of ourselves."
In combination, as whole brained persons of the male or female variety, we are all primally aimed at natural, gene-based satisfactions, pleasures, "happiness" and personal joy.
– Both life and death were recognized as equally integral parts of "livingness"; even though "survival instincts" urged individuals to stay alive as long as possible, the reality of death was yet to seen as a grand enemy.
– There was no shame or guilt. All Adams and Eves were "naked and not ashamed," as alluded to in early biblical writings.
– Worship and life were synonymous; there was no "religion" per se; livingness itself was sacred, as contrasted with later eras when religion became separated from life, as a separate function, with idolized images as a focus.
– Pragmatics and ethics were synonymous; "whatever worked" was, in effect, "morally right."
– Emerging language –when sounds became useful as symbols, were tools only, not honored, even worshiped as words and ideas later became sacred within themselves (e.g., sacred beliefs).
HISTORY NOW AND THEN
My premise is that ancient human history, both pre-recorded and written, is typically replicated in each new human being today–that is, that what actually happened in the past is still happening now as continually new human beings arrive on the present scene.
On this premise I try to examine ancient history as a potential mirror for catching clearer glimpses of what is yet being resurrected, as it were, again in my own life as well as in the lives of others living today.
Or, do I merely project my own dark history onto the pages of time?
In either case, this is what I now see, either real or reflected, in our long human move from the sea, caves, and jungle, to civilization and cities today:
In ancient pre-historical eras of matriarchal management, males began to chafe under female, goddess-like dictation which threatened masculine wholeness by imposing female values in three major arenas: 1)suppressed aggression; 2)suppressed independence, and 3)suppressed sexuality, as contrasted with female modes of: peaceful harmony, cooperative connections, and limited, covert, sexuality.
Groups of males in pre-recorded historical times, perhaps gathering after being excluded from clan life and opportunity for self replication, as yet occurs with lower animals, must have rebelled against exclusion and used their natural advantages of physical strength, aggressiveness, and independence to gradually overthrow matriarchal direction and achieve degrees of outward dominance over inherently superior females.
Ideally such male rebellion might have led to evolving social structures which embraced inherent values of both genders in a mode of group living which fostered whole being of both males and females in some sort of equality for differing gender values.
Or, as we might say today, memes might have evolved with respect for genes and found ways of mediating natural urges in society without forced suppression of some and exaggerated affirmation of others.
But alas, this did not occur. Instead, rebelling males apparently used their natural advantages to simply reverse existing orders, that is, pervert matriarchies into patriarchies, using outward dominance for forcing females into overt submission, replacing natural female adoration, or pre-conscious "goddess worship" with conscious god idolatry.
Again, in today's language, early males switched from compliant servitude to rebellious Chauvinism. They suppressed goddess direction in favor of god dictation.
But these speculations about pre-history social evolution were accompanied by more evidenced internal changes with damaging consequences related to personal wholeness (whole brainedness) of both males and females living in close proximity.
In broadest summary, I recognize these perversions of natural whole brainedness, accompanied by predictable degrees of lost well being as they gradually occurred:
– Overall: Suppression of whole being ("personhood") in favor of exaggerated focus and affirmation of gender differences.
– Expanded male use of language-based (wordable) images (left brain orientation) for coping with females in particular and life in general–that is, gradual elevation of left brain type "thinking," conscious sense-making, to confront and suppress right brain "feelings," as were more commonly activated in females.
– Gradual male suppression of personal right brain capacities in favor of self identification with more manageable left brain abilities, especially word-based images as contrasted with sense-based images as utilized in right brain knowledge.
– As capacities for consciousness evolved, primarily, I speculate, through escalated use of language both oral and written, as the main medium of human communication, functional suppression of problematic natural capacities, especially right brain abilities in males, gradually phased into psychic repression.
– Consequently, what we can now describe as self-splitting or degrees of spiritual schizophrenia, gradually began to occur in both genders, but far more pronounced in males than in females.
– But psychic repression, as we now know, is not the same as capacity negation. Consciously denied genetic urges continue to exist in mental darkness, generating their accompanied powers; but, dangerously with self repression, these powers are blindly projected, as it were, onto various external "mirrors."
– The most significant overall arena for this phenomenon in operation was in male denial of primal gender differences and evolved roles in replication, namely, female superiority and male service-hood, as was openly operative in matriarchal eras of pre-history.
But as males rebelled and, in effect, phased into unconscious denial, cloaked by contrasting illusions of male superiority and female servitude (e.g., male god monotheism as reflected in Adam and Eve in the Christian bible), they unwittingly came to project repressed personal powers onto the assorted Eves they outwardly dominated.
"Goddess worship," we might say, "went underground," cloaked by blatant forms of conscious "God worship." Although males practiced outward obedience to self-created male gods, they continued to blindly bow before operational powers, both real and projected, of superior females. Their assumed male superiority was, in effect, "all in their heads." Forms of outward dominance served mainly to cloak continuing modes of inward submission.
"Kings" may have been "on the throne," for example, but they continued to be quietly ruled by "Queens behind the throne"; or, while acting like "King of the Beasts" they continued to function as "servant of the pride."
– Specific content of typical male repressions cloaked by illusions, both religious and secular in nature, of male superiority included: 1) All right brain based human capacities–that is, genetic wisdom, emotions, intuition, and inherited decision-making abilities; and 2) socially dangerous forms of male aggression, independence, and natural sexuality (e.g., polygamy and "unfaithfulness").
HISTORICAL ERRORS OVERALL
THEN AND NOW
– Repressed X chromosome and right brain capacities–that is, feminine shadow and "feeling" abilities.
– Exaggerated Y chromosome and left brain activities.
– Resulting in:
1) Internal split.
2) Identification with younger and lesser powered aspects of human capacity.
3) Projection of personal powers onto already superior females.
4) Practical necessity of coping externally by submission and dominance:
a) Trying to get back what is unconsciously given from those who don't have it to return–symbolically "getting our balls back."
b) Trying to get over, suppress, and/or control females, or:
c) Living in rebellion against and/or avoidance of females.
5) Overall: missing creativity and being hung up on conscious thinking about pro-creativity devoid of projected powers inherent in embraced lust.
Consequently, repressed males are set up for dependence on religious gods or secular goddesses, that is, heavenly fathers or earthy mothers.
"I" only exist in mind's eye as a separate entity after repression or to the extent of my whole brain split. Otherwise, before repression or after unrepression, I am selfing–that is, a unique process of embodied "livingness," not a static "thing" of any sort (names as self, soul, mind, ego, me, or I).
Speaking, writing, or thinking in language forms (e.g., English) requires a noun, such as "I" for making complete sentences about personal experience. In either of these processes a concept of "I" self, soul, etc. is useful, even essential; but, crucial to accurate understanding, such nouns are to be recognized as language forms only, a left brain, language convenience, rather than literal entities, such as, a soul in body (as in religious concepts), or an "I" in mind (as in psychology).
In reality, these language based concepts are inherently restricted to left brain functioning, and are relatively useless in right brain activation.
Right brain oriented females, for example, have little need for defined self concepts, in contrast with left brain identified males whose sense-of-self ("ego," etc.) is crucially important in conscious well being.
Although individuation is a natural human agenda for both genders, only split brain, left identified males find illusions of independent existence to be important, even "worth dying for," as in, their "word," "honor," "reputation," "ego," or "I"–a phenomenon relatively non-existent in whole brain children, right brain oriented females, or unrepressed males, who remain attentive to creative selfing which does not require a separable self (noun) for activation.
Right brain females may "bond with heart" (in contrast with male bonding with word), but heart is less an entity like self or word than a symbol for right brain "livingness."
Only males, such as John (in the bible) imagine that "in the beginning was the word..." More clearly heart, word-less-ness (pre-language), or even "chaos," exist long before words even become possible in left brain language or "mind."
And, unfortunately, such typical males use words as mental tools for suppressing right brain, pre-language knowledge, as in biblical tales of man created first, and woman only secondarily from a man's unneeded 13th rib. Talk about worded illusions! Only a left brain male could imagine such an obviously unrealistic notion.
As Aristotle struggled to clarify limitations and errors in Platonic dualism (psyche and soma) or soul and body, as though these exist as separable entities; and Freud did between conscious awareness and unconscious experience; and Jaynes did between preconscious history and conscious experience; so I try to see and amplify potential unity between brain hemispheres, that is, whole brain living and split brain existence as occurs with human repression.
WHO AM I
In reality it is not "I" who experience as though I exist as a separable entity, but rather I only am (exist in processes of experiences, that is, being/becoming my inherited and unique capacities, apart from which there is no "I" (self, soul, ego).
So far as I know, scientific/medical brain research has not explored the psychic issue which I consider to be most relevant to this collection, namely, the identification of one's sense-of-self with capacities most typically associated with each hemisphere, at least in pop psychology.
These are my major concerns here, even if functional capacities are not literally and inevitably rooted in each hemisphere.
Furthermore, brain flexibility, as evidenced when injury of one area results in its previous functions being learned (transferred?) to another, points toward difficulties in proving definite assumptions about where specific capacities are rooted.
Other speculations related to my interests here include theories about "dominant sides," or uses related to differing "personality patterns." However, no research I have found considers the possibility of self identification, as I explore here.
The entity, commonly called "self" (or "soul) is, I think, a left brain, language-based creation. Right brain activation is basically an un-named, un-bounded phenomenon or process, not an entity at all. For example, right brained females' sense-of-self typically extends far beyond their skin, to include: appearance to others, house, children, husband, and all related surroundings.
SELF AND BRAIN
Left brain has a more defined and identified sense of self, generally assumed to be en-skinned or in the body. Right brain sense-of-self is not limited to inside of body, but often extended to appearance of body, house, children, husband, and often to friends and strangers as well.
Overall: Self, like soul, ghosts, and God, is an entity only at the Image Stage (#3) of the Creative Process. If one moves on to Stage 4, where per-ceptions are de-coded or transformed into con-ceptions, self becomes a language convenience, a useful noun representing a perception more sharply seen as a sense of self or the on-going experience of selfing–that is, a participle rather than a noun.
Academically, as an intellectual subject, apart from personal experience, from the perspective of language, self is a metaphor, a figure of speech. Perceptually, it "feels like" one is an entity, a separate existence which could as well be called self, soul, I or any other unified metaphor.
Certainly to think/write or speak personally in left brain fashion we need a noun and pronoun, such as, I and me, to make languagable sentences. Right brain thinking, however, operating below or without language, as in, pictures and music, may use metaphors and symbols (like musical notes) but can function quite well without words, including a noun like self.
Only when faced with challenges of communication with others does translating, e.g., sense-based perceptions, emotions, or "feelings" become necessary. Poetry, for example, may begin as a right brain "feeling" or insight; but before sharing with others such an unworded experience must be translated into left brain language.
Literally speaking, self is primarily a left brain abstraction, more useful in consciousness and language (left brain capacities), than in primal right brain experience. In whole-brained persons, not split and identified with one or the other brain hemispheres, such nouns (metaphors) are freely used in relationships and creative activities involving others, but are easily laid aside when one is alone or creating privately.
With split brain identifications, only left brain persons wrestle with such questions as, "Who am I, really?," as though self were literally a definable entity. In contrast, right brainers, more content with undefined being, including other worldly mysteries, seldom wonder or need to ask, "Who am I?"
Left brainers, with their sense-of-self identified with consciousness and language, need clearly defined words and sensible concepts explaining external reality, so a clearly defined self seems to be crucially important to them.
Healthy individuation occurs naturally via self-affirmation, that is, creating world/self with personal capacities, including whole brain expressions, beginning with right brain "volition" and left brain "decisions," that is, "feelings" moderated via "thinking." Sense activation (gathering data or discerning the world), that is, natural right brain activity, is refined reasonably with left brain discrimination.
But individuation is curtailed when sense-making (left brain "thinking for oneself"–"making sense" of perceptions) is diminished or replaced by ingesting sense of others, that is, believing what they say versus what I know (from personal perceptions), e.g., Santa Claus, Tooth Fairies, Gods, or that parents "don't do it."
Individuation (separate existence) is undermined by dependency on their affirmation, beginning with mother-minding and expanded to other authorities, such as, fathers and gods.
Individuation involves self creating via affirming right brain knowledge, beginning with genetic wisdom, that is, identifying self as one, versus left vague, undefined by absorbed or acquired images, such as, in my case, a "good boy"–shaped by their desires rather than my wants, their beliefs versus my believing, their voices rather than my voicing.
Schizophrenia is an exaggerated consequence of perverted natural "hearing" (and other sense affirmations), along with diminished self-making via ingested voices ("they says"), as often occurs in religion and families. Such a poorly or un-identified self (via natural individuation) is vulnerable to any similar or accepted identification, such as, Napoleon, God, or whomever.
Such hallucinated "voices" are repressed right brain perceptions, e.g., mothers, left unmonitored/examined by left brain logic unaccepted as part of self, and hence only "seen," that is, heard in projected images mirroring self repression, e.g., hallucinated voices in schizophrenia, gods in religious folks, muses in poets, or "mother's messages" in otherwise sane adults.
Right brainers often lack self identification. They typically remain relatively un-self-defined in their spherically perceived worlds, blindly, unconsciously, moved by instinct #1 selfing, while openly focused on #2 connections, and often inattentive to #3 self replication. They may exaggerate actual values of social approval (connections) in compensation for cloaking primal dictations by right brain mediated selfing instincts unmoderated by left brain reasoning.
Left brainers, with repressed right brains and lacking in conscious attention to both selfing and connection instincts, commonly create an analog "I" which they erroneously over identify with instinct #3, namely, self replication, as personified in penis and beliefs in sexual potency. They try to be "real men"–that is, sexual studs, rather than becoming whole brained persons who just happen to have testicles rather than ovaries.
SELF AND BRAIN
Right brainers, in the center of their spherical world, are open to experience available stimuli from all directions, both the outside and inside world. As such, they are relatively free from self definition, which is so characteristic of left brainers whose sense of security in their language-based world is dependent both on defined words and a defined self.
"Who am I?" is primarily a left brainer's question and concern, rarely understood by right brainers involved with experiencing their right brain capacities (e.g., sensations, emotions, intuitions, etc.), best done without getting pinned down to any one shape of self (or ego).
Left brainers wonder about and look for self-definition, specific answers to who-am-I- really, while right brainers seldom raise such internal questioning, and also resist any outside efforts to do so for them, that is, tell them who they are. Carefully, right brainers strive to "keep all options open," externally as well as internally.
I may, for purposes of language clarification, say that while men typically identify ourselves with our left brain, women do so with their right. But "word as bond"–that is, source of self identification, is different from "heart is me." In the latter case, with typical females, "heart" represents a host of un-worded capacities, not a defined self. Such women, as all attentive left brain males know, are difficult if not impossible to ever "pin down" to a definite self. Instead they remain changeable in time ("What does a woman want?").
The problem is not language, but repression and limited identification. Repression and limited identification result in: restricted available words; judgments of most descriptive words; forbidden best words ("curse words").
This is a series of speculations about how brain differences, especially self-identifications with one side or the other, may be evidenced or expressed in ordinary daily life.
Dreams, I think, are neither a lot of meaningless rattling of unoccupied brain cells, nor ancient muses or gods "trying to tell us something." Rather they are arenas of natural thinking in process, unrestricted by repressions operative in waking life, and unhindered by rules of grammar structuring the creative nature of normal brain activity.
Feelings, for example, which are socially unacceptable and/or threatening to ego shapes assumed to conceal or avoid instinctive emotions and desires, may be safely allowed to emerge in semi-consciousness. Natural passions unfitting in current legal and/or moral structures, such as, monogamous marriage, may be safely glimpsed, entertained, even sometimes enjoyed, under protection of darkness.
Unreasonable notions freed from constraints of left brain sequential logic, politically incorrect alliances, irreligious beliefs, courageous adventures avoided while awake to protect fragile egos, may cavort openly in dreams. Words, for example, restricted in waking life to dictionary definitions, may be freed to assume personal meanings otherwise left unnamed while awake.
Consequently, wiser persons don't ignore, dismiss, try to forget, or avoid thinking about dreams, or conversely, to glorify nighttime mental activity as though dreams are messages from gods or directions from magical muses. Instead, upon waking, the images, words, ideas, pictures, and passions resurrected in the night world are lovingly invited to enter honorably into carefully structured arenas of daylight thinking, which is otherwise left stiflingly constricted by walls of self repression.
Chosen benevolence ("helping others") beyond oneself and one's gene pool (family and kin) is an expansion of right brain volition to include left brain information–not an impersonal virtue based on self denial, as taught in organized religions.
Natural prejudice is selfingness extended to one's offspring, family, and gene pool, but limited to right brain volition only–that is, cut off via repression from left brain reasoning-ability and inclusion of wider information about membership in the ever expanding world of inner-connected human civilizations.
What, I speculate, would we humans be like if natural desires were unrepressed?
– Overall: movements, decisions, volition, will power would be creatively operative in creating world/self in expression/harmony with genetic drives.
– Primarily, right brain, spontaneous volition would be weighed on balances of left brain knowledge (mostly about consequences in the world), leading to sensible decisions (either in expression or deception).
The problem with genetic desire in society is that most of what we naturally want is problematic for social management. Here the historical religious and social mode of management has been suppression–judging natural desires evil, unlawful, obscene, and/or impolite.
But suppression is best accomplished on the individual level by repression, typically resulting in:
– Curtailed consciousness as critically needed for mediating desires in society which is threatened by them. Conscious discretion is essential for mixing genes and memes.
– But repression does not eliminate instincts and the power generated by desire, even when consciously denied and behaviorally controlled.
Instead of remaining owned, affirming individual selfhood, and guided by sense, lust powers, e.g., are repressed within and typically projected externally, as onto, gods and devils in religion, authority figures in society, and other people in community.
Men, for example, typically project lust powers onto women, with whom we may "fall in love," in irrational efforts to get back what we have blindly "given away," as it were.
Women, I observe, are typically less right brain repressed and consequently project less onto men, more often smoldering inwardly with negative consequences of self repression, opting externally for capturing and castrating (emotionally) males for family and personal services.
Both genders are left as "half persons," that is, relatively split within, looking for wholeness and satisfaction without, rather than in natural personal creativity–that is, to be made happy/whole versus creating world and self with inherent fulfillment.
ORDER AND BRAIN
Functional ordering of things and circumstances is pragmatically aimed at personal and group well-being (survival, replication, and enhanced living alone and together). Such ordering requires left brain based abilities for prioritizing objects and activities.
When one is self-identified with right brain functions, as is typical of many females, and hence fragile or limited in embraced abilities rooted in the left hemisphere, then such prioritizing of values and their pursuit is difficult if not impossible.
In compensation, or an unconscious effort to conceal this limitation, one may substitute compulsive ordering–that is, order for its own sake, devoid of actual connection with pragmatics, as though external control of things-out-there might cover internal limitations in prioritizing abilities.
ORDER AND REPRESSION
Inner wholeness, that is, embraced natural selfing, devoid of repression, and hence confidently creating in even chaotic circumstances, uses ordering as a pragmatic tool for supporting and enhancing natural creativity. As such, ordering things in the world is entirely pragmatic, without any inherent virtue.
Conversely, the more repressed a person is, that is, the less personal capacities are embraced and consciously available for immediate coping, leaving one essentially dis-ordered inwardly, the greater need he or she has for external order. Outside ordering of things and circumstances is, in effect, a compensation for, or an arm's length attempt to maintain at least a degree of internal comfort.
The more repressed one is, high degrees of internal disorder, lack of inward self-harmony, seem to require outside ordering before drives for natural selfing can be quieted.
As is true for external ordering of physical things and circumstances, so, and often more so, does inward disharmony resulting from repression, seem to require careful ordering of mental "things"–that is, ideas and "understanding" of "how things are," trying to erase mystery with plausible, "reasonable" explanations (as I am doing in this collection).
Natural thinking, sans repression, (as seen in small children let to be socialized) is essentially disordered in that it jumps freely from one perception ("subject") to another in accord with the kaleidoscopic nature of openly responding to the presented world. This speedy, ever-changing nature of natural thinking, which only pauses briefly with temporary conclusions before making constant revisions in accord with each new perception, has its own type of natural harmony, but is easily judged as "disorderly" or lacking in logic, even "non-sensible" in nature.
When a repressed person is predictably threatened by the apparently "chaotic" (literally, "creative") mode of natural thinking, including the inherently mysterious nature of reality at large, he may attempt to cope with such seeming disharmony of mind by ordering "thinking" which enters his mind in the same way that other repressed persons try to order physical things.
Conversely, in opposite fashion, internal disorder may be directly expressed in creating external conditions to match; rather than attempting to control inside disharmony with outside order, one may parallel what is "in here" with what is "out there." Inside disturbance may be expressed, as it were, out there in unconsciously orchestrated disorder.
The summary principle is: Internal disorder of "feelings" and/or "thinking" which predictably follows personal repression, may be coped with by diligent efforts to order physical and/or mental "things (ideas)" in or about the external world.
Or, conversely, similar degrees of repression may be expressed in parallel outside dis-order or disruption of things and circumstances.
And, as with creating external physical disorder to match internal imbalance of forces, so mixed ideas may be structured in parallel with dis-ordering mental conditions–that is, "crazy thinking" may be used to express "feeling crazy" in one's mind.
DARK ARENAS IN AMERICAN CONSCIOUSNESS
– True size of the gap between males and females; grand differences cloaked by illusions of equality and/or male superiority as in deluded male minds, or female inferiority, unfortunately accepted by many females, who often compensate by using victim roles as tools in covert power manipulations, especially with males trapped in bible based notions of God-established male superiority.
The extent of inherent and acquired gender differences, is historically cloaked with illusions of male superiority/female inferiority, and more recently with almost equal error, beliefs in gender equality–that is, that men and women are basically equal in all regards.
– Extent of near universal repression of natural humanity, more so in males than in females.
– Extent of accepted projections of repressed human capacities, beginning with recorded history and initiated anew in the life of most children today–especially boys, onto images of heavenly gods and earthly humans, mostly women by males.
– Parallel between religion and romance, each based on, or being modes of psychic projection in which natural human capacities are imagined (imaged) to exist outside oneself–in religions, onto male gods; in romantic love, onto female goddesses, only recognized as "lovers."
– Male religions evolved after pre-historical periods of female matriarchies, as modes of suppressing overt female powers, and creating images for mirroring repressed male powers, especially, creativity (as seen in Adam in the bible) and pro-creativity (as seen in Abraham).
– That, as Julian Jaynes noted, consciousness is a Johnny-Come-Lately on the evolutionary scene, only arising as civilizations became more complex and males retreated further from natural instincts into left brain identifications.
Creativity is, I think, the crowning human capacity, the apex of evolution so far, Mother Nature's greatest gift to mankind. Creativity is the expression of whole brain abilities mediated via consciousness in the world, beginning with bodily movements aimed at sense satisfaction (comfort and excitement), accompanied by physical activities and/or language expressions (doing, making, and saying things).
Overall, creativity is the natural human capacity for translating genetic directives into individual expressions, for giving form/shape to instinctual urges, for maximizing personal satisfactions.
Most primally, creativity is about staying alive versus dead, experiencing pleasure and avoiding pain, "feeling good" versus "bad," happy versus sad, excitement versus boredom, and joy, even ecstasy.
Although the term creativity is commonly applied to obvious art forms, such as, poetry and paintings, etc., creativity is, I conclude, the natural culmination of full humanity not curtailed by degrees of personal repression. Ideally, without inward splitting, living itself (daily life in the world) is creativity in action.
When so, continually novel decisions made in each evolving moment of time, in the midst of constantly changing circumstances, are regularly and consistently given outward expression in deeds, things, and/or words.
"Genes," we might say, personifying inherited human capacities, "are continually finding functional means of activation" among existing circumstances, including social memes and communal life with other similarly moved human beings.
Good living ("well being") and human creativity are literally synonymous. The more creative one is, the better life becomes; the more natural creativity is denied/repressed, the less meaningful life is found to be. Continual creativity is, in effect, heaven on hearth; rote living is existence is hell.
In largest perspective, natural human creativity is about creating the world and creating oneself in the world. The world, of course, is a metaphor for that which an individual perceives from "reality" beyond one's skin, and oneself represents unique, inherited, genetic capacities within one's skin–that is, the internal world as distinguished from "out there."
And creating is a descriptive adjective, not a literal act–as though one were an omnipotent god creating ex nihilo (something out of nothing). Literally, creating means shaping given and available materials, resources, and circumstances, as fully and harmoniously as possible with inherited capacities in accord with genetic directives.
ANALYSIS OF CREATIVITY
I. Natural Experience
Creativity is rooted in movement in the Creative Process, that is: 1) Perception, eliciting 2) Emotions, followed by 3) Images, translated into 4) Conceptions (held images of both right and left brain types).
II. Decision Making
Such movement evolves into whole brain decision-making, that is, experiential data into choices aimed at effecting genetic directives, mediating, as it were, internal genes in the external world.
Giving form and shape–expression to personal decisions made in Step II, that is, giving body to mind, form to "feelings," substance to ideas. In this third phase of creativity, novel (new) mental entities are translated into physical (both tangible and intangible) structures, such as, words, deeds, and things–statements (oral and/or written), actions, or objects (art and technology, such as, paintings, poems, sculptures, and functional gadgets, like chairs, mouse traps, and computers.
But the overall, historical and greatest male error in regard to creativity, well being, and personal male happiness is rooted in splitting our sense of self between left and right hemispheres of the brain, identifying with left, repressing right, and consequently leaving ourselves dependent on gods, muses, and/or females for representing denied parts of our human capacity.
Romantic love, for example, is the most graphic, socially acceptable, and ultimately destructive form of seeking personal wholeness by "falling in love" with an unconsciously recognized "missing half."
Ideally, sans repression, language and secondary symbols (words and mental knowledge) are used to support and enhance primary experience, that is, to deepen pre-verbal imagery, and mediate it more successfully in coping with the world outside oneself, not to evade or escape challenges inherent in mediating instinctive knowledge in contexts structured on its suppression (e.g., current society), as I have done.
In ideal use of secondary symbols, principles of reason are brought to bear on pre-rational, genetic-based body knowledge, including personal experience, merging both into sensible conclusions about maximizing satisfactions in society. But in practice, depending on degrees of personal repression, natural reason-ability ("being reasonable") is perverted into rationalization–that is, using left brain logic to create quasi-reasonable justifications for maintaining and remaining determined by existing repressions.
This mental perversion seems to be more common with right brain identified females than with left brain identified males, and is one of the reasons men are so notoriously unsuccessful in arguing with women who freely use rationalizations while thinking circles around men, easily supporting even the most irrational of ideas.
Ideal thinking, sans repression, when all known words, ideas (mental images) are held openly in consort with all memories (pre-verbal images), and artfully merged in conscious reasonableness ("being sensible") is potentially the most powerful mode of presence. But when left brain logic is separated from bodily imagery (as I have often done) intellectual knowledge (rationality) is extremely fragile and relatively impotent in face of pre-verbal knowledge in others, or especially when one's own repressed images break into awareness or unconscious activation (e.g., falling in love, or when denied anger erupts).
Summary: Most real power exists in activation of pre-verbal, non-sensible images ("true beliefs"); powers of rationality, though highly touted in society, especially by males, are vastly overrated in practice, when "emotional" forces (how one "feels") are present and easily overcome even the most comprehensive of logical thinking.
Ideal thinking (being reasonable) is relatively rare and commonly avoided and/or replaced by rationalization about images and repressed instincts, plus projected/displaced/safe relatively impersonal mental activity as allowed in reading, watching TV, casual conversation, and listening to others, about subjects and arenas of life which do not threaten personal repressions.
These later types of "impersonal thinking" are commonly "escapist" uses of the mind–that is, ways of activating brain cells while safely avoiding threats to established self repressions; or, when carefully selected, such reading, watching TV, conversing, etc., may serve as self-titillation, that is, relatively safe "tickling" of denied aspects of self, much like pornography for men and romance novels for women "tickle" repressed sexuality and dreams of rescue by magical princes.
In contrast, natural thinking, sans repression, is the process of continually forming images from all levels of perception, and constantly molding them into ever more reasonable left brain, language based, concepts, which are, in turn used as basis for decisions about actions (deeds and words) in the world, aimed at enhancing personal satisfactions. Each such concept is essentially a temporary conclusion always open to revision as new data arises from continually responding to the outside and inside world.
Most tension/stress is more psychological than physical, that is, rooted in psychic repression ("dishonest thinking") than in actually painful or bodily dangerous circumstances, e.g., more like having symbolic "toes stepped on" than real toes or feet.
On analysis, psychological stress is based on personal repression, reduced presence as a whole brained person who is both "feeling" and "thinking" in each instant–that is, one who has perceived and/or resurrected a sense of threat and opted for psychic escape into bodily freezing or absence of selfing over fuller presence.
Human problems–all the way from mild unhappiness to severe psychoses, are commonly blamed on such impersonal causes as: bad circumstances, like poverty; bad parents, most often, mothers; bad events, e.g., rejection, abuse, broken love affairs; bad situations, such as, disappointing marriages; and, most lately, bad genes, various addictions, and/or chemical imbalances.
And certainly any or all of these forces may influence, invite, support, and/or mirror personal problems; but, I finally conclude, cause is a misleading term, which all too easily tempts distraction and/or escape from truly personal factors underlying a vast majority of human problems.
Commonly overlooked, avoided, and/or dismissed personal factors which I think to be more relevant than any or all of the above listed causes, and potentially more useful, even essential, for finding resolutions and achieving personal happiness, include these:
– Personal repressions of natural genetic forces, usually in quest of essential social acceptance, beginning with mothers and fathers. Overall, many specific arenas of such repressions are rooted in psychic dis-embodiment, that is, coming to exist as though psyche and soma (soul or self and body), are separate entities, as though "I" and "it (my body)" are not a unit. Such splits are commonly reflected in a sense of bodily shame. In biblical images, Adam and Eve were reportedly "naked and not ashamed." But after exit from proverbial Eden (Garden of Pleasure), genetic repression is typically mirrored in shame about body and its physical processes, and exaggerated focus on soul or self.
– Unconscious projection of gene-generated powers onto external images, such as, gods and devils, angels and demons, other people, and various of the above noted causes. After such projections, the flip side of repression, real internal capacities and forces are only "seen" mirrored in assorted outside images. For example, when natural human creativity is repressed, it may be "seen" in creating gods; or, when male replication powers are repressed, they may be "seen" in females then believed to "turn us on (or off)."
– Splitting of whole brain operation, and thereafter identifying one's sense-of-self with one hemisphere or the other; typically, males begin early in life to repress right brain based capacities and identify with the left hemisphere, while females may do the opposite. When so, both males and females may avoid, even suppress operation of our dis-identified half--for example, males "trying not to be emotional," and females identifying with "heart" and avoiding "using their heads."
– After such internal self-splitting, we may thereafter seek personal wholeness externally–that is, to, in effect, "look for" our missing half "out there," as, for example, by "falling in love" with, and/or marrying, one who mirrors what is lacking in ourselves, in an unconscious effort to avoid challenges of individuation and unrepression within.
– Gender versions of such typical external quests, apart from romantic love, include males trying to be "real men (not 'sissy' or 'weak')" and find fullness of life from unrecognized-as-such imaged gods as: Winning, Wealth, Trophies, Reputation, Position, and other forms of Social Affirmation, as though what is missing within (via repression, projection, and self-splitting) might be magically found and acquired "out there," if, of course, "one tries hard enough."
Females may likewise fall into simultaneously unrecognized idolatry of Beauty, Virtue, Cleanliness, Order, Power Over Males, and/or Marriage (to a "good man"), as they limit self-awareness to "heart" and blindly suppress strength and "hardness."
Conversations between left brainers and right brainers is understandably difficult and challenging when either person is thinking in their habitual mode (linear versus circular) and wishes to be openly honest–that is, speak as we naturally think.
POINTS AND CONNECTIONS
Left brain thinking and talking is typically focused rather than diffused, aimed, as it were, at some goal, "going somewhere," rather than moving naturally with no recognized purpose in mind. When left brainers talk we are typically trying to "make a point," to reach some goal, such as, explaining ourselves, proving something, or "winning" via verbal dominance with more sensible and supportable "facts." "Feelings, of course, "don't count" in such left brain talk.
Again, in sharp contrast, right brain talk is typically more about establishing and keeping connections than "making sense" and/or points, or proving anything. Right brainer's words are more like verbal touches than fighting weapons, darkly "aimed" as it were, at social connections via language rather than hands.
Consequently, in practice, when a left brainer tries to make a point–which would obviously risk breaking a connection, a right brainer, sensing disconnection, is more likely to try to erase a possibly separating point (difference of opinion) than to understand it or take in into her own mind.
What, I wonder, is at the roots of the phenomenon, typically female, of becoming uncomfortable, upset, even highly disturbed with external disorder, as evidenced in food crumbs on a cabinet or floor, or anything else "out of place"?
Could it be related to a powerful right brain identification–with its holistic modes of perceiving stimuli from all directions and sources, in the relative absence of left brain analytic capacities?
Are such especially lateralized right brainers effectively overloaded with undifferentiated stimuli, so caught up in chaotic perceptions, like a cacophony of discordant sounds, without the sifting, temporizing, slow downing, of an activated left brain, that while life seems truly unmanageable, controlling at least a few immediate, small parts of the world, even crumb size, may help stifle larger seemingly unmanageable threats?
Or, on upper instinctual levels, could lack of conscious control of repressed passions, deeply perceived as overwhelmingly threatening to established stability, be symbolically projected onto innocent crumbs and other forms of more easily managed external reality–allowing illusions of safety from perceived-to-be dangerous impulses?
I suspect so....
DREAMS AND BRAIN
Night dreams are primal right brain operations, freed from daytime left brain concepts, e.g., of time, space, right/wrong, sequences, etc., and consequently freed to function normally, forming holistic patterns from multiple instinctual perceptions, either delighted in for themselves alone ("good dreams"), or useful in reaching wiser decisions than possible, based on left brain "facts" alone.
Functional mechanical devices (weapons and technology) and logical ideas may be invented/constructed from left brain data alone, but all truly creative productions, from poetry to music to novel gadgets to new notions to larger synthesis of all available information, are initiated by right brain activation.
In practice these "facts" are evidenced in many examples of what become left brain inventions or conclusions, but are seen and synthesized first in night dreams or while an inventor is "day dreaming."
Left brainers rarely feel comfortable without answers to their seemingly inherent questions; They often cannot rest, even sleep well, in the presence of any sizable mystery.
Right brainers, in sharp contrast, may be equally attentive–often more so–to perceptual unknowns, but–and this is the relevant difference: with no pressing need for sensible explanations, no necessity for answers, no threat of mysteries.
In fact, right brainers often seem to enjoy, even try to create and perpetuate mysteries (especially with left brain men) when answers might otherwise be easily available for the asking.
If, for example, a car (or carburetor) "works (does what she desires)", she "could care less" about how it works. Interest in How? only appears after it fails to work. Even the word work (as in, How does it?) can be freely used by right brainers devoid of how explanations. Matched colors, for example, furniture arrangements, or clothing combinations may work with no explanation at all.
IDENTIFICATION AND ANSWERS
Answers are word-able verbal explanations of perceptions, sensible concepts of whatever is observed, language based theories (commonly seen as facts or "The Truth") supporting all knowledge. They typically fall into categories of responses to language based questions, such as, What?, Why?, How?, When?, Where?, and Who?
Perceptions are immediately met by the left brain question: What is it ("What's its name?," or, "What's happening?." "How does it work?" "When/where did it occur (locate it with concepts of time/space)?" And finally, if "it" is human, then "Who is it?," including the grandest of all questions, "Who an I?"
Mysteries seem to be intolerable to left brainers. Any perceived unknown seems to call for knowing–that is, for reducing to language based knowledge (noun) created by answers to at least some of the 6 basic questions–that is, explanations about identity, cause and effect, location, etc.–literally, conceptual theories, but nearly always assumed to be stable "facts," even "The Truth."
By coping I mean: how we go about seeking genetic and psychic satisfactions, getting what we want, "feeling good" versus "bad," reaching desired goals, managing circumstances in safe, comfortable, and pleasing ways–that is, pursuing happiness ("salvation").
Left and right brainers may share the same overall goals in life but typically we go about trying to reach them in distinctive ways. We cope differently.
ANSWERS VERSUS FEELINGS
For left brainers, language based "answers," facts, mental information, discrete bits of word-able data, are the primary "tools" for coping. With others, "lines (desirable sounding words, promises)" are used.
For right brainers, "feelings," un-languaged images formed from sense perceptions, plus other genetic and psychic directives are the main coping "tool." Right brainers cope more by presented mysteries than revealed facts, by silence than by answers or explanations, by emotions rather than reasons ("sense").
BRAIN AND VALUES
"Makes Sense" versus "Feels Right"
Left brainers evaluate perceptions on conscious, language-based mental scales which may aptly be called "making sense," "being reasonable" or "logical."
Right brainers, in contrast, evaluate perceptions on pre-conscious, "feeling"-based scales sometimes named as: "feels right," "works," or, "...is comfortable."
"Reasoning," the blindly worshiped left brain capacity rooted in discrete bits of word-able knowledge held in conscious mind space, takes little account of "feelings," does not include right brain emotional data in structuring its concepts (including principles) ("What's want got to do with anything"), often tries to suppress emotions (personally and in others,) and may be deeply (unconsciously) threatened by un-wordable "feelings."
Again, in contrast, right brainers who think in images rather than concepts, rarely idolize Sense Making, but may privately and unconsciously worship at the throne of Comfort. The vague term "feels right" may be analyzed (a left brain capacity normally ignored by right brainers) as "what I'm comfortable with" as the positive value, and "I'm uncomfortable with that" as comparable with a left brainer's "That doesn't make sense."
Because left brain type "sense making" is constructed with relatively small, provable "facts," themselves formed from worded perceptions arranged in sequential ("logical") order, while a right brainer's "feels right" summaries must necessarily include a wealth of un-named images ("feelings") collected from all directions, both outside and inside (sphere metaphor), the former is both simpler to do and far easier to explain to others.
In summary, contrary to typical left brain thinking, "making sense" out of "facts" is a less complex mental exercise than arranging multiple images so as to "feel right," with no external rules available (as in, "situational ethics," a right brain mode, in contrast with "legalistic ethics" or left brainers, regardless of "feelings").
It is easier to "make sense" out of "facts" than create "feels right (comfort)" out of images, even though the former is more approved in society and the latter is often ignored, even looked down on.
Previously I have viewed the Creative Process of all human experience in five stages, all related to internal life. Time now to move on to analysis of Stage 6, related to experience in the external world. I shall call Stage 6, Expressing, as a move beyond #5, Becoming.
Wonder/awe is, in effect, "wondering what I will do"–how I will express (or be) myself in the world. This is the crossover point between being and doing, that is, where existence phases into form and action.
Such wondering is characterized by citement (not ex-citement), pleasure, joy, confidence, will power, happiness–even, at higher levels, with awe-approaching-ecstasy, or, in religious language, heaven on earth.
Steps 1-5 are about internal self-making; #6 is about external world making.
Wonder is istence, citement, spiration, without the ex or in applied (as in, existence, excitement, and in-spiration, all of which imply the moving force to be outside oneself. But istence (a non-word in English) means, in effect, "inherent" or occurring naturally. Nothing from outside "makes you" feel/think/do whatever. In creative living, Stages 1-6, power or force for living well, as in wonder, is naturally generated in genetic activation (sans repression).
Like "Steps" 1-5, #6, as such, is more like a natural phase than a literal step–that is, more distinguishable in mind's eye, objective analysis, than a separate event. In reality, expressing "just happens."
Although some measure of deciding, choice-making, is involved, including whatever degree of memory one has, especially as enhanced by unrepressed consciousness, it is commonly so fast as to appear as spontaneous, as though it "just happens."
Whole brain (pre or post repression) decisions obviously include (are based on) information from both hemispheres; but if quantity could be measured, I suspect primary right brain wisdom, being naturally greater than left brain reasoning based on language-based concepts acquired in one's own life time, would by far outweigh limited left brain type knowledge.
– Use brain to disembody and identify self with soul or mind versus body; Platonic error; Cartesian Split; Religious error; create existential illusion of being brain (mental) capacities and not being body (physicalness).
– Using mind (either half) to suppress instincts (body) deemed threatening to society and/or religion.
– Identifying with one half or the other; split brain; sense of self as left or right brain, as seen in identifications with word/heart as bond, and "makes sense" vs. "feels right."
– Males: use of left to suppress right; reason against emotions.
– Females: use of left to justify right; rationalize versus reason.
– "Battle of Sexes" is more literally "Battle of Brains" pitting one against the other across gender lines.
– Projecting repressed brain capacities; creativity onto God; sex onto women ("turn ons").
– Falling in Love; unconscious quest for "missing half" = repressed brain.
– Playing mind games (right or left) to avoid/subvert or destroy potentially healthy relationships (instinctive connections).
Males, such as, Jesus, Freud, Reich, and Jaynes, used concepts to project selfing instincts onto world, as in, "trying to save the world ('help others')" in varying degrees.
When inside genetic urges, such as, for pleasure, threaten one's identified sense of self, such as, "a good person," a right brainer may compensate by excessive focus on outside order of "things," such as, objects, clothing, crumbs, dust, or dirt, while a left brainer attempts the same with ordered concepts, facts, explanations, and ideas.
Paradoxically, verbal compliments have differing effects on right and left brainers. Typically they are positive for left brainers, and, on the surface, threatening if not negative for right brainers. Sometimes left brainers are suckers for compliments, while right brainers either eschew, defer, or deny them.
By compliments I mean verbal affirmations, attempts to support, affirm, or "put up" a person via positive observations (either real or imagined), intended as self (or ego) elevations.
Left brainers, especially if male, need compliments as outside affirmation for two reasons: 1) Male power is dependent on other-acknowledgment for its effectiveness, and 2) Left brain "thinking," language based reasoning, is inherently fragile in the face of right brain feelings, and consequently needs support of external data and/or confirmation from others.
Right brainers, especially if female, deeply need external security, e.g., male support and protection; but since they typically wield more personal power by covert means, such as, deference rather than overt dominance, verbal compliments may actually be threatening and reacted to negatively, at least on the surface. More effective and openly successful affirmation of right brainers is done non-verbally, with approved deeds rather than favorable, especially flowery, words.
Right brainers may deeply need and want to know that others approve; but overt affirmation, as in verbal compliments, if outwardly acknowledged may undermine covert power modes. When one copes by "putting others first" and themselves "down," by deference, submission, even apparent self sacrifice, then being "put up" by compliments contradicts this mode of power. Even if a compliment is "nice," possibly undermining a "put myself down" power mode is more likely to feel threatening than desirable.
Consequently, even well intended compliments to a right brainer often backfire, if not immediately, predictably in time, because deeper needs for real individuation require developed self confidence, not ego-boosting or even overt support by others.
Reactions of right brainers to compliments, in deeper service of covert power, may include: 1) Ignoring, pretending not to hear; 2) Outright rejection ("That's not true"); 3) Denial ("Oh, it was nothing," "I got it on sale," "Yours is better"); 4) Distrust ("You're just trying to set me up"). The non-verbal bottom line is: "Don't try to put me up; I'm more comfortable down."
Commonly, on the other hand, left brainers are more likely to be needy, even greedy, looking for compliments. If right brainers are suspicious of compliments, left brainers are suckers for them, often finding them when not really there. Only carefully worded (and rarely stated) compliments may sometimes be acceptably heard by right brainers, while almost any type of compliment, even crudely stated and patently insincere (easily observed as such by others) may flatter, even manipulate a typical left brainer.
EXPLANATIONS AND BRAIN
Explanations are critically important In the verbal world of left brainers who cope through the use of words and understanding. But in the non-verbal world of right brainers explanations may be easily, if erroneously, translated as: "raising ass," which may invite disgust, if not kicking.
For communication, left brainers may wisely learn to hold their tongues, while right brainers learn to say what they mean.
COMFORT AND HEARING
Left brainers take comfort
in illusions of mystery erased
by names, explanations, and understanding
all of which mean little to right brainers
who find comfort in beauty, harmony,
and illusions of control and perfection
To be heard by a left brainer
explain what you mean;
with a right brainer, mean what you say
or better still be quiet, pick up after yourself,
and put your dishes in the sink,
if not the dishwasher
For left brainers:
to hold your tongue
and find your heart
For right brainers:
to hold your heart
and find your mind
HEART AND MIND
Typically, left brainers have strong minds, but weak hearts, while the opposite is true for right brainers. Left brainers are more likely to be emotionally fragile, even with logical reasons, while right brainers may be strong willed, with fragile thinking and few logical explanations.
These oft cloaked differences may be evidenced in these ways:
– Left brainers need to be understood to know they are accepted, while right brainers need to be accepted without having to explain themselves.
– Left brainers often have copious reasons to justify what they do, but may be dumb about what they feel, while right brainers are often emotionally wise, but may be clueless about why they do what they do, that is, have logical reasons for their actions.
– With fragile emotional capacities, left brainers are far more comfortable and likely to tell what they think, while avoiding their own feelings and having little interest in those of others.
Right brainers, in contrast, with fragile thinking abilities, may delight in sharing feelings and visual descriptions of their sensitive perceptions, but care little for logical explanations or new ideas.
Consequently, left brainers have difficulty in listening to right brainers emotional revelations or extended perceptual descriptions with no apparent point or reason for telling, while right brainers, in contrast, grow soon tired of long detailed explanations or sterile ideas devoid of emotional content, no matter how logical or reasonable they may be.
In conversations, with contrasting difficulties in easy listening, left brainers may perk up and pay close attention to novel ideas or new information about subjects of interest, but close down to hearing seemingly pointless descriptions or free associations apparently "going nowhere in particular."
Right brainers, in turn, may turn deaf ears to seemingly obtuse ideas unconnected with immediate sensations or feelings, but respond quickly to any hint of emotional revelation.
My explanation of these predictable difficulties in conversation between left and right brainers is this:
– Left brainers who, in effect, unconsciously use "thinking" to control their own repressed "feelings," are deeply threatened with modes of conversing which avoid logical reasoning in favor of shared perceptions.
– Left brainers look at trees, but think and talk about forests, while right brainers silently see forests but think and talk about trees.
– Conversely right brainers with powerful emotions but fragile thinking abilities may be unconsciously threatened when invited into mental realms severed from present "feelings." Unwittingly they may either: 1) Not hear or pay attention; 2) Disagree immediately and express a personal belief; 3) Change the subject to some immediate sense perception or recalled memory; or, 4) Free associate about some element in a presented idea.
– Left brainers take comfort in mental harmony, when mysteries are cloaked by plausible explanations; but they can be relatively oblivious to disordered objects and physical appearances. Right brainers, in contrast, may not be bothered by mystery, and may shun explanations, even strive for its maintenance, but at the same time find comfort and satisfaction in carefully ordered and controlled things and relationships.
To please a left brainer, make sense of what you say and do; to please a right brainer, pick up after yourself and skip the explanations.
Cluttered minds are to left brainers as cluttered things are to right brainers–that is, disturbances in long suit identifications. Therefore the first strive for reasonable ideas and sequential conversation, while the second focus on ordered houses and stuff, not to mention, clothes, crumbs, and cleanliness.
Left brainers love to look
but are relatively inattentive
to how they look
while right brainers love to look good
to those who take good looks
even if they feel violated
if openly seen
Left brainers feel threatened by feelings
and use words for power
while right brainers shun thinking
and use appearances both for comfort
and control of others
Therefore, to impress a left brainer
but to get a right brainer's attention
Right brainers, often caught up in worlds of their own thoughts, typically have difficulty moving into the thoughts of others without some sense of self loss, particularly the worlds of left brainers. To compensate or remain secure in their own mode, they may:
– Quickly and unconsciously ignore, reject, and/or interrupt an outside thought in order to either inject one of their own, or else give the external idea a personal interpretation.
– Right brainers will often hear a phrase, statement, or idea and immediately repeat it, as though it were one's own thought, either word for word, or slightly modified with personal language, but in either case stated as though originating in their own mind. Or, they may change the subject to observations, associations, or resurrected memories of their own.
– Right brainers may silently remain physically present as another person talks, while privately continuing to think their own thoughts. In either case, not truly listening to external ideas of trying to understand what they hear, as in, entertaining different or contrary notions.
– Contrarily, word-oriented left brainers may be more able to hear and interested in right brain thinking, but find understanding difficult for these reasons:
– Right brain thinking is holistic rather than sequential, and hence right brain talk may freely "jump around" from one subject to another, which left brainers typically find frustrating to their train-track type, point-oriented thinking.
– Right brain thinking and talk is more connection-motivated than goal-oriented. Because left brain thinking and talk is typically aimed at some goal beyond an immediate encounter, such as, conveying or getting information, making a point, winning an unrecognized verbal contest, while right brain talk is more about human connections, such as, making and staying in contact (with "points" irrelevant and "winning" counter-productive), left brainers may find right brain modes of conversation frustrating if not threatening.
When especially conflicting ideas arise and left brainers are competitively challenged,
enlivened, and eager to win, right brainers, more concerned with peaceful connecting than war-like conflict, are apt to either emotionally withdraw or otherwise try to "smooth things over," as by changing the subject, which, predictably, leaves left brainers unsatisfied if not angry.
Voices are to schizo-phrenics
as Gods are to semi-phrenics,
Muses are to quarter-phrenics,
and right brain perceptions are to phrenics,
that is, embodied, whole-brained persons
yet able to know what they feel,
to think honestly, say what they mean,
and speak truthfully
LANGUAGE AND EXPERIENCE
Language and experience exist separate and apart from each other. We can language (think/speak) without experience represented by words, or experience without language, as do infants before they learn language, or adults in a foreign country where an unknown language is spoken.
Ideally, when the two are combined, left brain language accurately describes or expresses right brain experience, and right brain experience is delineated, defined and refined through the use of left brain language. Holistic experience is reduced to discrete mental entities (images) sequentially arranged in concepts of time and space with tools of language.
This natural, whole brain merging of right brain experience and left brain language facilitates artful world/self making–that is, "being oneself"–embodied with discernment and creativity for shaping circumstances and oneself in accord with instinct satisfactions and limited human capacities.
Pre-conscious experience provides the energy, umph, and pleasure of life: language and consciousness facilitate creative activation and discretion in expression.
However, these ideals are obviously not inevitable; more commonly we average Joes (and Janes) become split-brained and self identified with one or the other hemispheric capacities, e.g., either with logical language ("word as bond") or with unworded experience, thereafter, in effect, worshiping blindly at unrecognized idols of Making Sense (is reasonable) or Feels Right (is comfortable), while we unconsciously sacrifice our repressed halves on altars of Ego and Social Affirmation.
When so, as is so often the case, left brainers commonly try to cope with the world and right brainers through the exclusive use of language and logic, that is, making languagable sense of everything with the extremely limited powers of reason, while correspondingly trapped (self-identified) right brainers cope with exclusive use of unlanguaged "feelings"–that is, "heart" rather than "head," or bodily experience undefined, moderated, and mediated in the world via their repressed left brain language-based capacities.
Predictable, even inevitable, consequences may include:
– When gender based, that is, men as left brained, women as right, men with "mind," women with "heart," men blindly worshiping "Sense Making" and women, "Feeling Comfortable," then:
a. The proverbial Battle of the Sexes ensues as men project and try to express/control their dis-associated right brain, and heart identified women pervert language and reasoning (their own left brain) into impersonal tools for power (especially, male management).
b. Romance and marriage of opposites, as split brained humans unconsciously attempt to reclaim their own "missing half (repressed brain)" in the form of another person, rather than in their own head, as when left brain men fall in love with right brain women, or emotional women with rational men.
But the basic existential and philosophical error underlying these more obvious consequences of brain splitting lies in the unrecognized illusions that:
1) Language and experience are synonymous rather than inherently separate–that is, that experience can be languaged, or that languaged concepts are experience.
2) Opposite, that language concepts can't be experienced, that they are "just talk" or "all in our heads," and certain experiences, especially deeper and more moving ones can't be languaged (e.g., that sin is only a theological notion (a left brain idea), or that an experienced sunset or orgasm can't be "put into words."
3) That such deeper, more unconsciously moving experiences can't be beautifully and accurately languaged, that is, worded/described with sharp clarity, and therefore must consequently be: a) left as "unfathomable mysteries," only voiced in poetry, paradoxes, metaphors (e.g., "love is a rose"), or crude descriptions, or: b) projected and imagined to come-from-without (be caused by), as from gods, muses, fate, luck, or "inspiration"–that is, gifts from "above" or "beyond" versus rooted in embraced/activated human capacities, and consequently only able to be worded in ethereal, other-worldly, non-specific, un-ordinary language, or expressed as "unbelievable," "too great for words."
Self repression (split brains) is the basis for this third error (illusion). It is not that expansive (depth) experience can't be clearly and accurately languaged (said in words), but rather than split brain repressions limit, if not prevent (as in extreme self identifications), the fuller use of denied hemispheric capacities.
When, for example, a left brain male falls in love and experiences right brain based emotions, he typically abandons, at least temporarily, his left brain identification, and with it, consciousness and language based reason abilities. Then he has difficulty "finding words" for what he feels, not because language is lost and/or unavailable, but because he has partially left his capacity for thinking clearly, that is, using left brain language abilities.
His fall is more literally a switch, that is, a movement from left to right, leaving left brain thinking and language in favor or right brain experience. Such moves "feel like" falls because letting go of a major self identification and coping device may indeed seem to be dangerous, even life-threatening, as self was previously identified.
Or, when religiously oriented left brain males perceive typically unfamiliar "feelings" (un-worded experiences) and have no available and accepted concepts (language) to explain ("make sense of") such an event, they may easily switch from definable, secular language to explain their "irrational" experience with such vague theological ideas as, "God led me," or, "The Devil made me do it."
Secular poets may do the same when they avoid rigorous conscious left brain attention to their right brain experience by escaping into such easier explanations as "muses came to me" or a sunset or woman "inspired me"–cloaking to themselves their move from left to right (language to experience, or "thinking" to "feeling") and their use of poetry to partially bridge the gap.
Poetry, when honestly done for self expression, rather than, e.g., for money or social approval, may be an attempt (usually unconscious) to bridge the gap (chasm or literal disconnection) between left brain language and right brain experience. Poetry takes the tools of language to the edge of reason and dictionary definitions, e.g., with metaphors, analogy, and/or personification, and gives verbal shapes to non-verbal experience, just as artists and sculptors do with paint and clay.
CONVERSATION AND BRAIN
Left brainers, if nervy, may have dia-loges; but right brainers mostly have interlaced mono-loges in which persons take polite turns in voicing (telling about) right brain sensations, emotions, events, and/or memories. Right brainers listen mostly to sounds and tone of voice rather than to ideas, or for data (stimuli) which reminds them of personal experiences ("that reminds me....")
Right brain hearing of words is similar to other sense activations in their spherical world, that is, just one more type of stimuli to respond to, even as to sights, smells, sounds from other external/internal sources. Literal listening to dictionary defined words or logical concepts is rare, in proportion to personal responses to sounds (emotions of speaker, tone of voice, and/or stimulating words).
In this chaotic cosmos
left brainers find comfort
in illusions of control over mental data,
such as, words, facts, reasons, and concepts
and are relatively inattentive to tangible stuff
like arranging furniture and how we look
while right brainers find comfort
in illusions of control over physical things,
such as, furniture, closets, crumbs, and appearances
but are generally disinterested in ideas and definitions
and can tolerate, even enjoy, mystery
Left brainers may pay as much attention
to words and ideas as
right brainers do
to emotions and appearances
But rarely is attention visa versa
RELIGION AND BRAIN
This is an analysis of popular religions from the perspective of brain hemispheres–Right versus Left. I use the general terms "right brain" and "left brain" both literally and metaphorically, that is, for human capacities probably rooted in each hemisphere, but also for personal functions commonly associated with actual parts of the brain.
Before approaching the subject of religions, I amplify this combination of capacities and functions which I identify here with each half of the human brain.
LEFT BRAIN RIGHT BRAIN
Individuality Communal connections
Being a separate person Belonging to groups
Standing out Fitting in
Words, language, concepts Emotions, rhythms, intuition
Intelligence, sense-making Genetic Wisdom, "guts," "bones"
Being reasonable, logical Feeling right, comfortable
Public education Amygdala learning
Book knowledge Body knowledge
– Society, indeed civilization in general, tends to support, honor, praise, and elevate, left brain type "thinking" over right brain "feeling," that is, intelligence over emotions, book knowledge over body knowledge. In public arenas of business, education, politics, science, and most areas of shared living, "objective facts," being reasonable, "making sense," and logic, are held in higher esteem than "subjective feelings," being comfortable, "feels right," and intuition ("gut feelings," what one "knows in his bones," and ESP).
– Individuality–being a "leader," a separate person with independent thinking, strong opinions, one who "stands up for himself" and "thinks outside the envelope" is consciously supported as a human ideal; but in practice, communal connections, fitting in, "not making waves," sharing accepted beliefs, being liked by others, a good follower, an active member of the group, patriotic, etc., is commonly taken as better in the long run. Except in emergences where powerful leadership is called for, "independent thinkers" are more commonly seen as "trouble makers" who disrupt ordinary life, and "good members (of any group)" are commonly supported.
I have concluded that the oft unrecognized meme, What They Think, is perhaps the most powerful force blindly operative in most current societies, and that idealized "individuality (true selfingness)" is, in effect, an "enemy of the state (and all local groups)." Whenever What I Think is out of harmony with this near omnipotent meme, forces of communal rejection become quickly operative.
– Awareness and right brain based capacities evolved first, and are consequently far older, more primal, and genetically ingrained. Consciousness, much later to evolve as a human capacity, is primarily related to left brain abilities, such as, word-related images and ideas.
"Genetic wisdom," "body knowledge," instinctive directives–all the pre-conscious forces inherited for keeping us alive and well as individuals, plus geared for self-replication, are based in deep bodily systems, the lower brain stem, and mediated to awareness through right brain connections.
I have coined the term "amygdala learning" to represent individual modes of coping acquired in early life, beginning in the womb and escalating rapidly in the first months outside mother's body. Since these primary patterns of family survival and enhanced well being are "learned" and become relatively ingrained before one develops left brain based language abilities and expanded conscious thinking, they remain essentially pre-conscious and are also mediated to personal awareness (as best I can tell) via right brain activation.
– From the perspective of personal awareness, right brain knowledge, "Genetic Wisdom," is given, while left brain knowledge is gotten. It is as though body knowledge, that is, what we inherit "knowing," such as, how to absorb air, digest food, pump blood, heal wounds, seek comfort and pleasure, avoid pain, and, in general, "stay alive" and "make babies," comes to us; but "head knowledge," that is, left brain information, must be acquired. Somehow, we "just know" what genes structure us to do; but we "must learn" outside facts and social information. Right brain "knowledge," we may say, is "in our bones," or "guts," but left brain facts must be "learned in school" or "read in books," etc.
This difference in the way we perceive the two types of knowledge, that is, how each comes into personal awareness, is extremely significant insofar as understanding one's self is concerned. The nature of the Creative Process of human experience (amplified elsewhere) is such that primary perceptions (Step One) are naturally followed by emotions (Step Two), and both are immediately transformed into images (Step Three). What we "experience," (in Steps One and Two), we "image" (form "visual" shapes to represent) in Step Three, on the way to forming conceptions (Step Four).
But relevant here is the natural process of forming images from experience (perceptions and emotions) for, in effect, "holding" in "mind space," subject to remembering and possible use in transforming per-ceptions into con-ceptions. For whatever we perceive, from within or without, we naturally create images to represent our experience. These images, whether formed from internal instincts or external sensations, are a part of the Creative Process of human experience.
Now back to the relevant point, namely, contrasting ways in which we naturally come to be aware of perceptions from "within" (body knowledge) and perceptions from "without" (head knowledge)–or, "right brain" and "left brain" experience. As noted, right brain knowledge, being either engened and hence embodied, or else "learned" before left brain based language becomes possible and is, in effect, "ingrained" (held "unconsciously"), seems to be given ("comes to us"), while left brain perceptions are gotten, as in, from personal study, read in books, heard from others, or simply grasped via self-directed senses (looking, listening, touching, etc.).
In summary, right brain "wisdom" seems to be given, to come to us, without effort or initiative; but we must get left brain knowledge through conscious, personal choices, often accompanied by diligence and "hard work." Right brain knowledge is, in effect, dark and mysterious, while left brain knowledge is lighted and consciously understandable. Being given, without personal effort, "Genetic Wisdom," for example, is a mysterious gift; but studied, learned, personally acquired left brain information, being "sensible" (subject to explanation by known "reasons") is, in effect, earned, not given.
Still, by nature of the Creative Process, both types of grasped perceptions, whether from within or without, whether given or gotten, must naturally be imaged–that is, shaped into some form for holding in "mind space"–that is, subject to recall and possible use in coping with the world. Even if we don't personally know where dark, mysterious right brain knowledge "comes from," still we need images to represent such experience of personal awareness.
Left brain experience, for example, looking at an object or learning information, is easy enough to image (Step 3). We simply create or use an available name or notion for whatever we perceive. "That is a tree," for example, or, "Columbus discovered America" is a fact. Consciously acquired knowledge, for example, by looking (hearing, touching, etc.) or learning (e.g., from books), is easily transformed into a mental concept (Stage 4) which is holdable "in mind"; but mysterious "messages" from the unknown (e.g., pre-conscious genetic drives), lacking tangible associations, also need their own images (in keeping with the Creative Process).
Since "everything's gotta be somewhere"–that is, the nature of human experience as well as the languages we have evolved to represent what we "know," require "placing" or "putting" whatever we grasp, "somewhere," the same is true for both right and left brain perceptions. Whether awareness comes from dark, mysterious, right brain "messages," or lighted, "sensible" left brain grasping, both naturally require images for moving on in the Creative Process.
But the problem is: where shall we find or acquire images for the vast wealth and power of dark, mysterious, right brain experience, which is an integral part of all human life? Unlike personally acquired left brain knowledge which is easy to image with various language symbols (words and concepts) the silent "voices" of "Genetic Wisdom" and pre-language "learning" also require their own images, before we can "think about them" or "place" (in mind's eye) where they come from.
At this point in every human's life since history has been recorded, enter religion.
Since pre-religious matriarchal times, after males achieved outward dominance over females and created explanatory myths to cloak obvious facts about life creation, male-structured religions have been available for providing necessary images for pre-conscious (right brain) human experience.
An invisible "God," in Hebrew religion for example, became the imaged source of silent "voices" and dark, mysterious internal powers, such as, urges for human action and forces for replication. Over the course of Christian history, images for other perceivable-but-invisible forces were expanded beyond one omnipotent God to include devils, demons, angels, and, much later, the holy virgin Mary ("Mother of God"), plus their son, Jesus.
Specific icons vary, obviously, from one ethnic group to another; but in common each religion provides readily available images to represent common, human, right brain based experiences, as needed for processing mysterious perceptions into conscious conceptions.
– Insofar as early survival and infant well being is concerned, communal acceptance, especially as personified in a mother's "good graces (her symbolic smiles, pleasures, and dispensed services)," is far more relevant, indeed essential, than any degree of "individuality."
Later, of course, "individuation" becomes important for personal well being in the world beyond home; but when "Genetic wisdom" and "amygdala learning" prevail, "belonging" acceptably is all that really counts. Consequently, healthy, effective, right brain functioning is critically relevant, long before words, language, and left brain type thinking is even possible.
In summary, instincts evolved to support human existence, beginning outside the womb with "mother recognition" and rapidly expanding to include "learning" in "mother management," must be deeper and more pre-consciously operative than other drives for "being an individual," especially when unique characteristics vary from family traits.
In the larger picture of human well being in civilized communities, "fitting in," I conclude, is far more important than "standing out." Primal genes for communal acceptance must reasonably be far more powerful than later-to-evolve instincts for being our unique selves.
– Insofar as personal power is concerned, capacities and functions related to the right brain are vastly more power-packed than later-to-evolve human abilities associated with left brain words, language, ideas, reasons, and "head knowledge." When left brain "sense" is pitted against right brain "feelings," the latter win hands down, every time–in the long run, if not immediately.
– While growing up, we tend to identify ourselves, that is, our sense of who-we-are, more with one hemisphere or the other; that is, from an overall perspective, people tend to become "right brained" or "left brained."
– Human well being, personal happiness, fullness of life, "heaven" now, is based in whole-brain living, that is, embracing and identifying oneself with capacities and associated functions of both halves of the brain. We cannot, as best I can tell, "become ourselves (as contrasted with various ego states) without being both right and left brained, that is, existing "full brained."
Obviously, elements of each half are sometimes more appropriate in given circumstances; often subjective, right brain capacities are more needed, while at other times, objective, sense-making is called for. But in the overall economy of good living, one surely needs resources rooted in both hemispheres of the human brain, with embraced ability to move freely from one to the other as current situations call for.
– Religions are basically a product of right brain activation. They are the only major, socially accepted, politically supported, legally protected, public arenas where being right brained, openly experiencing human capacities rooted in and associated with this hemisphere, is the order of the day (at least the Sabbath or Sun-day).
In all other public arenas, education, science, business, politics, and communal exchanges, left brain functioning (words, sense, logic, "being reasonable," etc.), is at least consciously elevated as the affirmed mode of "showing up" openly.
In all these arenas which make up the bulk of time and personal attention, right brain activities are generally "looked down on," at least consciously and especially by males, who currently dominate most social and religious authority positions.
– In religions, and here more than anywhere else in major public arenas, communal connections are elevated over all individual concerns. Right brain type satisfactions--"emotional" comforts, rhythmical pleasures, group cohesion, and accepted beliefs, are practiced, elevated, praised (even worshiped), while left brain activation (being reasonable, sense-making, personal thinking) is totally our of order.
True believers, honest parishioners, unconsciously agree to, in effect, abandon their left brains while engaged in religious practices. "Check 'making-sense' at the door" might well be an entrance requirement for hearty participation in most churchly rituals and practices. Blind faith is the order of the day, and reason is, in effect, Public Enemy # One.
– On the positive side, religions provide a place to go, rituals to participate in, and company of accepting fellow human beings. Religions structure events, plus belief and behavior systems, where one can openly, without being "looked down on," activate this essential part of our common humanity. Here, more than anywhere else in society, one can safely put sense-making aside, abandon "having to think," openly emote without threat of judgment, luxuriate in un-examined feelings, indeed, gross abuses of "logical thinking."
– Church is one place where even hard nosed, intellectual, objective, scientific types can go briefly and be accepted/supported in temporary excursions into total subjectivity–that is, to suspend left brain self orientation and experience commonly repressed right brain capacities.
– Religion will never go away or be defeated by intellectual endeavors, such as, reasonable analysis, atheism, etc., until society evolves in support of whole brain living versus currently accepted divisions between the two, with left being publicly elevated and right typically judged negatively in consciousness.
Rational atheism (left brain argument) always loses in head to head encounters with religious believers because its inherent powers are minuscule in comparison with subjective forces rooted in Genetic Wisdom.
– Religion threatens intellectual types who are self-identified with left brain sense-making, because sense has been idolized in unconscious efforts to keep one's own right brain repressed.
(Confession: This has been one of my life long problems. Traditional, conservative, organized religions have often seemed negative to me because they threaten my fragile security found in "trying to be reasonable." This was also my error in Fellowship Church, namely, attempting to establish what was publicly billed as "a non-church church," that is, a left brain oriented community which was essentially counter-productive to primal religious "instincts." Fellowship was an inherent threat to right brain subjectivity, offering instead an invitation to unrepression, which cannot but undermine security found in right brain identifications.)
GODS AND REPRESSION
Gods, I analyze, are left brain, language based representatives of repressed right brain capacities, useful for conscious thinking after natural volition has been squelched but primal powers remain deeply operative.
After capacities for consciousness arise, along with personal and social reasons for thinking and communicating about personal motivations, god language ("theology") becomes a functional mode of relating to right brain based capacities. This is especially true because most of Mother Nature's wisdom is below levels of human awareness, being either inherited or personally acquired early in life before language is possible, and therefore without representation in awareness.
At primal levels of attention, before self awareness, that is, before concepts about an "I" as an entity become possible, there is, in effect, no internal "self" to image as a cause or initiator of natural volition. Consequently, external "gods" (images "out there") are useful for conscious thinking and communicating with others in regard to human motivations.
And, in the absence of unrepression--that is, so long as an individual lives with personal repressions intact, theological language remains a viable option. Psychological language (self vs. soul ideas) may be used in replacement, especially for those jaded about organized religions; but I conclude that far older religious language about gods and angels, demons, and earthly personalities, such as, Jesus and Mohammed, is potentially the most expressive of actual human experience.
For example, a line in a church song from my childhood implored: "....do then the best you can, not for reward, not for the good of man, but for the Lord." For teaching about "doing one's best," or what I might now call "being oneself" in maximum form, this song points out two of the most seductive of all psychological excuses for undermining personal creativity, namely, "acting good" in hopes of external reward or because service to mankind (other people) is inherently "good," rather than the belief that one's true "best" can only be for "the Lord."
In the absence of unrepression about religious imagery, de-coding religious representations of repressed right brain capacities into conscious personal concepts–that is, if "God" or "the Lord" have been previously accepted as unconsciously valid language symbols, then this song might be an extremely pragmatic message about the essential nature of natural (vs. social) "good."
Translated into psychological language, "for the Lord" might more clearly be understood as, "for yourself." But without this movement from religious to psychological imagery–that is, from God to self, better, I think, to learn such a valuable message, no matter what language is used to give voice to this truth about the nature of personal "good."
There are two major mirror images for male projections: gods and women. Religious projections, in which personal powers are repressed and blindly given to established religious images, such as, God, Jesus, angels, devils, etc, are less dangerous than those given to local counterparts, namely, women, because with the former, one keeps personal access to external powers-that-be via various personal rituals.
But the second major male mirror, namely, woman, is far more personally dangerous insofar as immediate male well being is concerned. Whereas religious practices can be carefully circumscribed to special times, places, and forms, (e.g., Sunday worship, etc.) relatively distant from affairs of daily (and nightly) life, female icons, being intimately connected with many aspects of male life, are far less easy to avoid.
Gods may be held at bay by time, circumstances, and mental denials; but females, at least in current societies, are to be encountered, even lived with, and relatively impossible to isolate oneself from in either the mental or physical world.
The gender situation is further complicated by at least two other major factors: 1) inherent female superiority, and 2) typical female repressions.
The existing, inherent power imbalance, with females holding the upper hand on their own, is further exaggerated by the addition of male projections. Women, born with natural and socially assigned greater powers are grandly given more in proportion to male projections. The more repressed males are, the more powerful females typically become with the secret gifts of male projections.
This exaggerated imbalance of powers would be difficult enough on its own, but unfortunately the second fact, namely, typical female repressions, exacerbates the challenge. Common female repressions include two major denials–natural female superiority (including "kill-ability"), and natural female sexuality. After these two significant denials, females are left unaware, and hence out of conscious control, of powerful forces given and thrust into their hands.
The unfortunately common consequence is, in effect, emotional and sexual over-kill of males, plus self-sacrifice of female selves.
Already emotionally fragile due to repression of right brain capacities and exaggerated reliance on relatively impotent left brain reasoning, males are commonly vulnerable to typically right brain identified females. But when females themselves are out of conscious awareness as well as careful control of their larger powers, they cannot but often use them unwisely, especially when they feel personally threatened.
The psychic situation is like carrying an unrecognized hand grenade in one's purse, ever-ready to have the pin unconsciously pulled at any time and using it to blow up a male's already fragile emotional self. Emotionally powerful women, unaware of their strengths, may easily run rough-shod over emotionally weaker males without ever realizing their devastating effects.
In song and colloquial language, these typical events of emotional over-kill may be voiced as "breaking my heart," or even "taking my heart away."
Primal significance of "sacred places," in my case, up a tree or in my "play house," was/is freedom to "get honest with oneself," to "think one's own thoughts," and "feel one's own feelings" without being overwhelmed and/or condemned by voices of others.
On analysis, voices heard in sacred places are less repressed right brain volitions–genetic wisdom allowed in awareness. At first such "voices" are heard first hand (by "ear"), that is, spontaneously and directly; but as self repression increases, voices are diminished, later requiring oracles, priests, interpreters, and publicly affirmed sacred places, such as, healing sites, sacred groves, and even later, churches and synagogues.
But before sacred places (and invisible friends who serve in much the same way, as accepting people images)–that is, before self repression begins, all places and people are, in effect, sacred in the sense of wholly saying "Yes" to oneself.
Everywhere and with everyone, an unrepressed person (or child) is free to "listen" to "voices" of genetic wisdom augmented by personal experiences, that is, to hear and respond to his/her own right brain.
The beauty and power of sacred places today, e.g., religion in churches, is in their cloaked affirmation of repressed right brain capacities and knowledge, safely protected from threatening left brain reasoning (sense-making) by jointly held, even irrational, beliefs. Such beliefs become comforting substitutes for repressed thinking, even glorifying spontaneous volition cut off from left brain sense-making and possibly whole brain living, seen as threatening to affirmation by external authorities (powers-that-be).
Religions keep conscious awareness of mystery alive with theological preaching and teaching which openly proclaims the mystery of God and the ultimately unknown nature of His whereabouts and activity. At the same time, relief is provided from threats of total personal impotence in the continual presence of an invisible, ever-present omnipotent force, always watching, as it were, like Santa Claus with children, by offering limited ways of influencing Supreme Power in one's personal favor–as by, prayer, approved behavior ("being good") and "right" beliefs.
Even if believers can never know for sure about successful management of God's favors, hope may be kept alive by dedicated efforts at living up to each religion's particular list of approved modes of living and believing.
Point: In a world where atheism and unconscious secular beliefs in reason, science, medicine, psychology, wealth, and/or popularity–not to mention romance and sex, may easily blind one to regular awareness of human limitations and ultimate mystery surrounding all finite knowledge (e.g., meaning and purpose of life, "what's gonna happen," absolute truths, plus any certain knowledge about good and evil), conscious, continual recognition of mystery, along with the fun, excitement, and inherent zest it brings, is predictably lost.
Unlike little children, yet innocent of assumed omniscience and associated judgments, who still know about wonder in the face of daily unknowns, jaded atheists and secular believers, not regularly reminded about ultimate mysteries, easily become self righteous, unconsciously godly, bored with life–if not worse, without hope, and, in religious language "lost" in illusions of certain knowledge (left brain "salvation" based on "sense" rather than right brain "feelings").
(This belabored observation is largely confessional–that is, a global-like description of my own lifetime errors in trying to become my inherited, natural self, freed from dictation and idolatry of religious beliefs commonly confused with Ultimate Truth.)
Furthermore, religions serve as a continual challenge to illusions of left brain salvation, such as, well being through knowledge (information, reason, and sense making) and/or medicine, counseling, winning, marriage, sex, etc., by requiring participants to regularly suspend rational thought in favor of accepting irrational, non-sensible ideas (e.g., "eternal life," magical Jesus, local miracles, etc.) under threat of group rejection as well as eternal punishment if one fails to believe or otherwise engages in the sin of doubt, and participation in equally irrational rituals, such as "holy" communion.
Music, homilies, sermons, catechisms, Sunday school, seminaries and assorted church classes serve to regularly enforce and confirm assaults on left brain sense making (as religious beliefs commonly require), and thereby invite church goers to lapse back into right brain mysteries, whenever religion is practiced.
Religion as such may have arisen (evolved) with the dawn of consciousness as a mode of remaining in semi-conscious touch with right brain wisdom (knowledge and power) internally repressed in service of existing powers and structures, and hence projected externally at first, onto images of dead monarchs (who had previously held power over them as subjects), and later, with the emergence of religion apart from daily life, onto imagined external gods.
Existential human splitting, reflected in language and conscious thinking about body and soul in religion, body and mind (and/or self) in psychology, I and me (or it) outside of religion and psychology, or as colloquially expressed in recognized distinctions between heart and head or feeling and thinking, may all be physiologically rooted in imagined splits between left and right hemispheres of the human brain. I say "imagined" only because such divisions are mostly "in mind's eye" rather than biological (physical) facts; insofar as functional reality is concerned, that is, the ways we actually live our daily lives, these internal splits might as well be physical realities. We mostly exist as though they are "the gospel truth."
Parallels exist between religion and romance, each based on, or being modes of psychic projection, in which natural human capacities are imagined (imaged) to exist outside oneself–in religions, onto male gods; in romantic love, onto female goddesses, only recognized as "lovers."
Male religions may have evolved after pre-historical periods of female matriarchies, as modes of suppressing overt female powers, and creating images for mirroring repressed male powers, especially, creativity (as seen in Adam) and pro-creativity (as seen in Abraham).
Religious versions of secular psychic processes may involve magical wishes for salvation from without, as a reward for approved behavior and/or correct ideas, by true believers who focus on blind beliefs in images of gods and devils mirroring repressed/projected positive and negative personal powers.
Social idolatries of, for example, Winning and Wealth by males, may be replaced by religious idolatries of Good Behavior and Right Beliefs. Falling in love with an earthy woman or man may be replaced by even more magical beliefs in rewards inherent, for example, in falling in spiritual love with a heavenly Jesus (Mary, etc.).
When religions and secular society are married, as is commonly the case, religious commandments and social laws and mores typically overlap in support of power alliances between religious and political authorities. In these historically un-holy marriages, typical human repressions and self-splitting are viewed as virtuous and then supported both by religions and society.
Being "a good Christian," for example, and "a good Citizen" become essentially synonymous. And, I conclude, the latest great gift of Mother Nature to human beings, namely, potential for expanded conscious creativity, is commonly sacrificed on the altar of socio/religious approval.
With due respect for each of these well intended quests for personal happiness from external sources, later if not immediately, and appropriate empathy for diligent devotions in each arena along with temporal pleasures many find in the assorted efforts, I can only affirm degrees of problem resolution, expanded personal wholeness, and current well being, through successfully facing various challenges inherent in un-repression, withdrawing of projections, while embracing and activating inherent natural gifts.
Singing bebop is a secular version of speaking in tongues in religion, that is, a socially acceptable way to briefly exit dictation of logical left brain language and engage once again in the delightful right brain experience of joyfully voicing feelings unrestrained by dictionaries, not to mention other powerful social controls.
Natural sin, that is, eating the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, must be a left brain function, since such knowledge cannot but be rooted in language based thinking. Right brainer's image based discernments may be sharply discriminating, yet are typically without projected judgments (good and evil) of that which is concluded to "work," "feel right," or "be comfortable."
MUSIC AND RELIGION
Music and religion are right brain functions–that is, they are rooted in and emanate from genetic capacities based in the right hemisphere of the brain. As such, they have no essential connection with left brain capacities, such as, words, language, and reason-based thinking.
Being right brain functions, they are essentially instinctive rather than learned–that is, they arise and operate, as it were, on their own, without conscious direction. For example, "good musicians," we say, "have an ear for music." And, while content of religions ("beliefs") is largely acquired, the actual spiritual experience of "true believers" is natural, inherent, and not learned or gotten through teaching.
Of course in practice (as lived) brain hemispheres are connected by a Corpus callosum, and hence function cooperatively (before psychic repression). We naturally "think about (a left brain function)" what we "feel (a right brain function)." In order to think about right brain functions, such as, music and religion, we create notes for music, and words, ideas ("beliefs") for religion. These are especially useful in communicating with others about these natural, pre-verbal (right brain) experiences. Also, they are essential for teaching music or promulgating religion to others.
Even so, in practical experience, purest music and religion remain essentially right brain activities, with very little, if any, inherent connection with left brain "thinking (logic, reasoning, etc.)." They are, as we may say, most basically matters of "ear" and "heart," not "head" and "mind."
Male god religions cloak continuing practice of unconscious goddess worship in historical times, even as openly practiced in eras of pre-recorded-history. What we see in religions today, e.g., a Pope, priest, or preacher as God's Man (with illusions of superior males) may cloak what is yet practiced at home and behind patriarchal government and business structures.
Analysis: With split brains along gender lines (especially, males with left brains), males unwittingly project onto male gods and local authorities (laws, political and military leaders, coaches, etc.) but unconsciously continue with projections onto unrecognized-as-such female goddesses (cloaked as "lover," "the little woman," "my wife," etc.).
Major role projections onto sky gods and earth women--the first conscious, the second unconscious, include: 1) personal creativity, most primally activated in decision-making capacities, decide-ability, choice-making, "making up one's own mind," "thinking for oneself," about what to do/say in ordinary daily life situations.
After repression, overall decision-making capacities (creativity-in-operation) may be projected onto religious gods (and beliefs about "right" behavior) and/or secular females (oracles back when; wives now)--this plus various secular versions of unconscious idolatry of left brain created concepts onto which creative decision-making is blindly projected. Secular examples include: Winning (being on top); Efficiency ("best way"); Numbers (e.g., how many reps to take); Speed (getting there first); Time (being "on time" by clocks vs. timely); Reason (logical deductions); Understanding (concept-oriented explanations of perceptions; and Making Sense.
Other evidences of projected decision-making capacities include male needs for "inspiration" from muses, lovers, or gods for any creative activities, such as, novel explanations, poetry, and hearted living.
Analysis: Roots of creativity (natural decision-making) are in the wealth of right brain images (primal "learning" or "held data") rather than in left brain concepts acquired through accepted thoughts of others, education, reading, and/or reasoned conclusions of one's own.
Hence, when left brain oriented males need/want to make creative decisions (while repressing our own right brains), we look externally for right brain "wisdom"–for "inspiration," that is, directions from gods, muses, lovers, etc. This may be seen on two levels: 1) Creating things–objects-in-the world; most commonly these are "what women want," that is, functional household objects and gadgets (e.g., chairs, furniture, can openers, mouse traps), or technology to ease female chores; and 2) Creative art forms, like paintings and sculpture; poetry, and even novel concepts which include more than left brain type data.
3) Personal pro-creativity, as reflected in projected male "turn on" capacities.
Pervasive conscious male "thinking about sex (left brain imaging)" may cloak unconscious projection of associated powers onto females of all ages. Typical arenas of male sexual repression, seldom, if ever, recognized as such, include:
Delightful, invigorating lusting, as in: continual scoping, wanting to see, touch, smell ("fondle") female bodies, as preparation for determining possible conceive-ability before penetration and sperm deposit.
THEOLOGY AND BRAIN
Gods and devils, angels and demons, are left brain personifications for deeply repressed and projected perceptions of the flow and ebb of natural bodily pulsations, of the build up and release of energies in life-sustaining processes and their associated pleasures.
These projections are typically made after natural rhythms have been interrupted, even split in two, initially in service of survival in the outside-of-womb world, when essential resources (nutrients and protection) are only available from those with, in effect, powers which are god-like in comparison with one's own.
Parents may invite/support such projections in quest of shaping an infant to fit in with prevailing circumstances, that is, in an overall sense, to civilize or train a highly developed animal to become an acceptable, hopefully productive, citizen, beginning with mother, family, and later with community.
The first conflict between natural selfing (instincts for survival as an individual) and contrary social expectations, is rooted in and evidenced externally in an infant's pleasures, that is, Mother Nature's evolved motivation for instinct activation, namely, "feels goods" with "whatever works" in staying alive and healthy.
Primal drives for pleasure versus pain are expressed in desires ("wants"), seen to outsiders as "wanting what one wants when one wants it," seeking "selfish" satisfactions without awareness or regard for external affects (beginning with mother's personal needs/desires).
Although external control, beginning with a mother's exercise of her goddess-like powers, is only aimed at behavior management (e.g., to stop crying, biting, and hitting, and beginning potty training as time moves on), an infant's perception of conflict situations is rooted in awareness of internal pleasure, not outward actions.
He/she naturally "knows," for example, that timely urination and defecation "feels good," even without words and language for expressing so, and that holding/delaying elimination "feels bad (hurts)"; but the social "goodness" of "not soiling diapers," is beyond personal awareness as "potty training" begins.
Or, even earlier, primal instincts for aggressive action in seeking pleasure/avoiding pain, may be naturally expressed in biting a nipple when milk flow slows before painful hunger is eased in pleasurable filling, or natural, pre-language crying as an infant's expression of any type of perceived pain vs. pleasure, may also be unacceptable to parental ears.
Later, as individuation naturally advances, self-pleasuring, as in "playing with excrement" or later "touching oneself down there (tickling genitals)" becomes even less socially acceptable, a child's awareness of socially offensive behavior begins with perception of associated pleasures. External "badness" is perceived as internal "goodness ('feels goods')."
To amplify the natural challenge of denying/suppressing internal pleasure in quest of even more essential outside services (beginning with mother's milk, protection and comfort powers)–that is, curtailing immediate pleasure in quest of delayed-but-essential satisfactions (e.g., being fed, held, accepted, and permitted-to-be), parents typically begin–after brief times of "unqualified love (anything goes and is approved)," to utilize assorted means and degrees of punishment to support their contrary, unnatural agendas.
Not only may they deny/curtail/delay pleasures, but they may also use their superior forces to cause pain. Extremes of non-pleasure, it turns out, may be even more powerful child motivators than limited delays in approval, for changing a child's behavior. And what typically harried mother with overwhelming responsibilities in child rearing, including civilizing an animal, can resist seeking easier ways to do her culturally assigned tasks? If punishment (pain) works quicker than indulgence, either overtly, as with slapping, or covertly, (even unconsciously) with subtle forms of rejection or denied permissions, then why not?
But in these familiar and near universal processes of socializing infants as bodies mature and individuation advances, the immediately critical and long lasting internal perception focus is on suppressing pleasure and/or avoiding pain. Approved behavior may be all that parents and society consciously seek; but a child's easiest avenue to getting and keeping initially essential resources available for survival (instinct satisfaction), is via repressing pleasurable instincts which lead to unacceptable actions. "Bad" behavior is best avoided by nipping it in the bud of naturally good pleasures (perceived desires). If "wanting to" can be squelched, doing what one "has to do" in order to keep survival supplies available must be a universal childhood temptation and commonly opted way of fitting in with essential others.
Overall, the near universal mode of social adaptation, beginning with every infant's immediate family, is repression of internal physical pleasures inherent in pulsations of living energies in all organs and bodily structures, in quest of external acceptance and support.
In broadest summary, genetic pleasures are typically sacrificed in favor of memetic rewards. Expansive bodily pleasures are relinquished as limited social satisfactions are accepted in their place.
Now back to theology.
But bodily pleasure repression from awareness does not truly erase instinctive urges from their blind operation–only then apart from conscious acknowledge and left brain control. Inherent drives for pleasure versus pain continue to move us "unconsciously."
However, typical social training, coupled with childhood learning ("getting socially smart") becomes associated with actions which are socially "bad (e.g., biting, hitting, and bed wetting, etc.) and behaviors with far less, if any, pleasure attached, are learned to be "good."
Ultimately, bodily pulsations originally perceived as pleasurable become the source of "bad" or socially unacceptable behavior, while socially "good" deeds and modes of living are eventually assumed to be "good."
In a play of words, socially "bad" deeds, seen as "evil," may herald the birth of "D-evils" as a D is added to personify "them." And socially approved behavior, "good" acting, may likewise be personified for language and thought purposes as an "o" is omitted and "g" capitalized into "God."
My rationally preposterous conclusion is that this play on words, only possible in left brain language based thinking, is the basis of historical and present theological assumptions, that is, that "God" is a language personification of perceived social "good," and "Devil," conversely, personifies what religion and society take to be "evil."
And these near universally accepted conclusions are, in bodily reality, 180 degrees opposite from genetic wisdom, namely, that what "feels good" is our best clue to natural goodness, and what "feels bad" is Mother Nature's way of warning us to avoid if we want to stay physically alive and healthy as natural creatures.
GOD AND DEVIL
OVERALL HUMAN SITUATION
Historically, and continuing until today, Mother Nature's evolved ethics have been ignored in favor of unnatural religio/social ethics established to replace genetic wisdom with memetic values, beginning with mothers unwittingly duped into becoming primary teachers, to be followed by religious leaders, educators, politicians, and unwritten mores now embedded in patterns of socially approved behavior.
Evidenced in these ways:
– Overall ancient natural good is judged as bad and replaced by manmade social good.
– Manmade religions evolved with a "God" created to personify social "good" and
socially useful powers generated by natural capacities.
– Negatively judged natural good is commonly perverted and personified in a "Devil (D-evil)"–that is, an image used to project repressed power of natural good socially seen as evil.
– Society thereafter uses repressed personal powers consciously given to God, but actually left unregulated by left brain direction, and hence available for use by social authorities.
– In order to fit in with established perversions, "good citizens" may dis-embody themselves in left brain's mind's eye, creating imaginary selves (souls, egos) allowing compromise splits, consequently seeing their "good" selves as separate from body, with a Devil to represent and be the cause of genetically desired (natural) good.
RELIGION AND BRAIN
– Religion is a right brainer's heritage in left brain society.
– Religion is a socially accepted form of right brain experience in society which consciously affirms left brain thinking while continuing to unconsciously remain right brained in reality.
– Religions are "invented": 1) by disciples of whole brained, seminal thinkers, who opt for idolatry of such an admired person over following his/her directions (e.g., Jesus and Christianity) in personal living. Or, 2) by clever authoritative leaders as a form for social control over duped followers. In this case, repressed natural powers of human creativity and pro-creativity are perverted into service of maintaining social structures which serve to keep authoritative leaders (e.g., Popes in Catholicism) in control of masses.
– Religions serve their adherents ("parishioners") in two primary ways: 1) First, they provide acceptable forms and occasions for continued expression of right brain capacities midst social structures which tout left brain values. For example, by affirming non-sense capacities, that is, "feelings," desires, such as, death as not real, dis-embodied existence (soul in body), and by right brain music which voices instinctual satisfactions in cloaked-but-acceptable language (e.g., "...in the arms of my dear Jesus, oh there are ten thousand charms...").
2) Community (#2 instinct) without threat to repressed sexuality which has been perverted in service of chaste, non-sexual, non-sense based structures.
3) Personal support for remaining relatively un-individuated, that is, living with illusions of a cosmic family (Father God, Mother Mary, Son Jesus) and ultimate irresponsibility, like little children–if one is "good" in religious ways, as was so in one's earthly family.
– For adherents and parishioners, religion is a socially acceptable arena and practice for right brain experience in society, cloaked with left brain values (e.g., reason versus emotion).
– For authorities, both secular and religious (parents, politicians, priests) religion is a powerful force for perverting repressed human desires into the service of existing socio-religious structures and continuing control by current authorities.
– Right brainers have difficulty with mortality–that is, embodiment and hence death, for two major reasons: 1) to accept embodiment would require embracing instincts which socio-religious forces (memes) seek to repress in order to pervert their natural powers into communal versus personal values. 2) Death is difficult to grasp because it is the mortal enemy of our primary and most powerful instinct, namely, for selfing–self survival at all costs, and because recognition of the reality of death requires activation of left brain concepts of time (seeing past/present/future) and applying it reasonably–in this case, to seeing the transitory nature of personal existence.
Without time awareness, and defined words, right brainers easily imagine "everlasting life" and themselves with powerful-though-repressed selfing instincts, as being immortal.
JULIAN JAYNES AND I
Like Jesus, Freud, Reich (and many other here unnamed persons) the seminal, creative thinking of Julian Jaynes has tickled, provoked, and invited me to further clarification of my own perspectives and experience in this vast and fascinating realm of mind/self/soul/body and consciousness. Although many of his novel and daring insights make sense to me, I have gradually come to see that my own views differ in several significant ways, such as:
– Bicameral Mind: What Jaynes understood as "voices of the gods," I see as "genetic wisdom" in operation in whole brained humans–that is, instincts, passions, amygdala learning, and primary personal experiences expressed in right brain volition–that is, relatively spontaneous creative action (movements) in the world as perceived. In this whole brain state one naturally creates world/self in accord with "genetic wisdom" mediated into whatever social circumstances surround one.
– I see his "breakdown in the bicameral mind," which he related to language and social changes, and precipitating the "birth of consciousness (around 1200 B.C.)," as the consequence of splitting whole brain creativity into self identifications with one or the other brain hemispheres, most commonly, males with the left and females with right.
Language and society no doubt set the stage and contribute to this split in self-identified functions (the "split" is metaphorical and functional, not physical), but the culprit and cause is, I think, less related to language and consciousness than to personal repression of instincts and brain related capacities in quest of social approval.
The "breakdown," as Jaynes understood, was, I think, less related to the "origin of consciousness" than to the beginning of repressed awareness, both in ancient history as well as in individual lives today. Rather than losing "voices of gods"–as though god-oriented religions were ceasing to work, repression sets the stage for the birth of religions (e.g., Christianity) in history as well as "getting religious" in today's world.
– My premise: Ancient recorded history is a macrocosm of personal history, both then and now, that is, what occurred in civilizations in the past still occurs in the lives of individuals in all civilizations today. In contrast with Jaynes' idea that ancient peoples were without consciousness ("could not think") and were dictated by "voices of gods (actually their own right brains)," I think they were still naturally more whole brained (like children today) and moved creatively in response to existing, perceived circumstances (e.g., caste systems of workers/kings, similar to bees with drones/queens).
– Jaynes' understanding of consciousness as a consequence of "applying metaphors to objects and events...in mind space" is indeed one type of conscious mental activity, especially as employed by left brain, concept oriented males; but there are many other types of with-sciousness, that is, holding and weighing knowledge (e.g., visual or emotional knowledge, as in, facial recognition in babies) which do not require either language or metaphors.
Although familiar left brain language based "conscious reasoning" involving mental manipulation of symbols, concepts, and metaphors, may indeed be done as "an analog I naratizing in mind space" (one of Jaynes' definitions of consciousness), other comprehensive forms of right or whole brain based thinking also involve merging large amounts of directly held sensations and emotional knowledge, yet without language (word names) to utilize them in creative movements (volition based).
I think Jaynes, as a typical left brain oriented and self identified male, with, perhaps, a repressed right hemisphere (evidenced in his male-type life style), correctly analyzed his own prevailing type of mental activity (as requiring an "analog I"), concluding this to be the nature of all consciousness, and then set about to unconsciously project his experience onto human history, seeing it reflected more clearly around 1200 BC, and erroneously concluding that to be the "origin of consciousness."
There obviously is a type of consciousness "based on metaphors, developed through language, and is an operator, not a thing" (Origin of Consciousness, p. 245); but, I conclude, this is not the only–or even the major type of whole brain thinking. Instead, this "analog I" type of conscious thinking is primarily a consequence of repression, brain splitting, and left brain orientation, more common in males than females.
– Summary: What Jaynes saw as "breakdown of the bicameral mind" I see as "whole brain splitting" resulting from personal repression, most typically with males identifying with left hemisphere and repressing right, and females identifying with right but keeping functional contact with left.
I suspect Jaynes to be an example of this common mode of social adaptation, who, like me, projected his unconscious experience back onto the pages of history and eventually saw himself reflected in "the breakdown of bicameral mind"–but never came to personalize his vision, that is, decode his historical projection and recognize its personal basis.
Freud, before Jaynes, had also dared creative thinking, avoiding mental entrapment in prevailing concepts commonly accepted in his day, by looking into dark elements of his own history, seen replicated, if not projected, in mythology as well as in the lives of his clients (patients). He too examined many aspects of ancient artifacts, mythology, and recorded history, looking, I speculate, for reflections of his own remaining inner darkness as might more safely be seen at a distance from himself personally (as I have done).
In the meantime, analytic work with his clients (as was true for me also), may have brought him into daily contact with deeper levels of common human experience which he dared to conceptualize in "theories" about "unconscious (not-conscious)" parts of human minds, as revealed in dream analysis and on-the-couch revelations of his clients daring escalated self honesty in the safety of Freud's acceptance without judgment.
There, I speculate, he may have gradually come to see more shadows of his own "unconscious self," which he at first began to clarify as seen reflected in ancient mythology, e.g., myths of Oedipus and Laius, which cryptically mirrored (I continue to speculate) elements of his own father/son past.
In time, still darkly projecting his own experience and insights from his clients, he perhaps came to partially acknowledge common father/son relationships in typical monogamous marriage families, especially the dangers all sons face with emerging puberty in the presence of powerful fathers and the incest taboo,
But so far as we know from his writings and available life data, he, like other typical left brain oriented males, myself included, projected his emerging awareness (his creative thinking) into conceptual theories, about, e.g., "castration complexes" in males and "penis envy" in females.
Thereafter, like Jesus (an earlier rare creative thinker) and Jaynes later, he seems to have stopped at Stage 4 of the normal Creative Process, namely, conceptualization, and spent his remaining life energies promulgating, explaining, defending, and perhaps unconsciously attempting to get other-affirmation, rather than (so far as we know) moving on to Stage 5, absorbing his insights into himself, rather than "gathering disciples" (as did Jesus with more success than Freud, Reich, or Jaynes).
Whatever he did personally, more evidently he stopped creative thinking at the father/son level of typical families, never moving on to examine/explore deeper aspects of mother/son relationships--which I have projected (in other writings) onto the Oedipus/Jocasta elements of the same myth).
I, of course, borrow all four of these creative thinkers (Jesus, Freud, Reich, and Jaynes) as well as mythological and biblical tales and insights from my own genealogy, plus 30 years of counseling with a wide variety of clients (other common humans), as mirrors for projecting dark "unconscious" aspects of myself.
These four men, more than others I have read or known, have provided clearer mirrors onto which I can project and safely see aspects of my own darker self.
Both Freud and Jaynes grew up in typical families with dominant fathers and outwardly deferring mothers, perhaps reflected in Freud's Oedipus analysis and Jaynes late "preaching" his father's early sermons.
Maybe my atypical family, with a dominant mother and a deferring father set the stage for my safer existence with an accepting father, therefore not needing a dominant Laius (Oedipus's father) to project onto–and conversely, more attentive to Jocasta as a mirror for seeing reflections of my assertive mother.
In either case, I suspect that all male theorizing and concept creations which we come to "believe in" (like religious beliefs) may more accurately be seen as mirrors reflecting personal experience in early family settings when we first opted to repress elements of our natural selves in quest of communal survival.
VOICES OF GODS
"Voices of gods," as postulated by Julian Jaynes looking back, as well as some few individualized persons in the beginnings of recorded history, were, I think, actually right brain volitions unrestrained by left brain consciousness and the necessity of "making" personal decisions by an "analog I," a language based illusion existing only in mind's eye.
In natural, unrepressed human existence, Mother Nature's wisdom mediated to human awareness via right brain activation (summarized now as "wants," and "feelings") and moderated by limited learning (beginning in the womb), directs personal movements in a seemingly spontaneous way.
This wealth of internal data, in conjunction with sharply discerning sense-abilities for perceiving external circumstances, quickly and easily reflects in relatively smart choices with little necessity for left brain language and reason based decision, all this guided by primal instincts for survival and enhanced satisfactions.
Only with the advent of organized religions with notions and names for external gods, did the personification of natural wisdom become possible–as in, beliefs that "gods tell us what to do," that is, a means of conscious thinking and telling about natural volition.
In the beginning, I speculate, both then and now in the life of every unrepressed child, "the gods," including their "voices" were/are only language conveniences for conscious thinking and communicating with others–not external entities in time and space–that is, intangible left brain representations for symbolizing what existed as relatively spontaneous, right brain rooted volition–that is, naturally "acting smart" in the perceived world.
But as self repression begins and natural response to right brain knowledge is curtailed, belief in gods becomes literal rather than figurative, in proportion to lost believing rooted in inherent capacities.
Thereafter, left relatively impotent and unguided from within (via genetic wisdom) we humans, then and now, must look outside our repressed selves for directions and guidance about how to live, and what to do in this lost Garden of Eden on earth, as, e.g., of imaged gods and/or real women.
Freud, Reich, and Jaynes, like Moses and Jesus before them, were, I analyze, uncommonly open and dedicated to left brain type thinking without total repression of right brain awareness: e.g., Moses and "the burning bush"; Jesus and "Father and I as one"; Freud and "unconscious mind"; Reich and "bodily armoring"; Jaynes and "bicameral mind." Also, each reached back into history in quest of clarifying their own projections. They "thought outside the envelope" of their current times.
I analyze Freud's catch all category of "unconscious mind" to be rooted in the psychic phenomenon of repression or denial of socially unacceptable natural right brain knowledge, cut off, as it were, from mediating left brain consciousness, that is, access to left brain reasoning capacities.
Followers of any seminal thinker tend to adapt sensible-to-them ideas of their "leader," and thereafter seek to defend, clarify, explain, and promulgate their accepted concepts, rather than moving on in the creative Process to absorb them into themselves (Stages 5-6) and "live out" their expanded, uncommon knowledge–that is, become creatively whole brained "as little children."
Historical "voices of gods," ala Jaynes, are in present form mostly "voices of mothers (and other authorities)" ingested into psychic "consciences"–that is, pockets of right brain learning (in this case, accepted from others); only in this case, from experiences with mothers and others, including absorbing their knowledge and beliefs, as distinguished from private experience (e.g., "Mother knows best" versus "fire burns").
The personal part of mother experience type knowledge often boils down to "if I don't obey her directives (or accept her thinking) some form of punishment or negative-to-me consequence can be expected (e.g., whipping or withheld permission to play, etc.)".
Both, however, ancient god voices and current mother/other voices are literally (on analysis) segments of right brain perceptions, ingrained "learnings," pushed from regular awareness and mostly allowed "hearing" only in sacred places and/or with invisible friends (or under hypnosis or extended therapy).
Perhaps what Jaynes saw as "origin of consciousness" might more clearly be seen as evolution of left brain development, especially, self-identification with left brain capacities. As increasingly complex civilizations required more and more language-based concepts, such as, left brain notions of fairness, justice, individual rights, indeed, of individuality itself, including concepts of self, and, especially for subservient ("slave") males, more likely to identify with left brain concepts, including desires for escalated self-satisfactions.
Perhaps Jaynes long struggle to distinguish consciousness from awareness would have been easier had he explored brain hemispheric differences more carefully.
Jaynes' "breakdown of the bicameral brain" as birth of consciousness, implying an evolution of whole brain thinking following eons of effective splitness (right brain gods telling men what to do), might more accurately be seen in reverse, that is, movement from times of relatively whole brain (unsplit) thinking to development of left brain language based capacities and expanded consciousness as needed with advancing civilization, and, and this may be the pivotal fact: splitting of hemispheric capacities and emergence of self-identification with one or the other halves of the brain, leaving humans functionally split-brained.
Jaynes' conclusions about right brain "gods" and left brain "hearers," supported with current data about modern religions and research on schizophrenic behavior, is perhaps more about projections of current perspectives, correlated with a few examples (e.g., Iliad and Odyssey differences) and human behavior which might be described in current religions as "hearing God."
Although this may have been true, and an accurate explanation of a few carefully selected facts (e.g. Freud's reading of Oedipus), perhaps for masses of humans the same observation might have other even more plausible explanations.
Maybe, for example, what some understood and called, even back then, "voices of gods," as would of course be useful in social management and establishing authority/compliance situations (even as with mother/child relationships today) was simply whole brain operation, as in unrepressed children, in which comprehensive sense perceptions of all available data, including previous social arrangements (kings/slaves) were interfering with good left brain analysis of currently available options (such as, personal rebellion), and citizens, like healthy children today, simply adapted creatively without stressing about circumstances.
Consciousness, I think, did not magically appear in 1200 B.C., or even just then evolve as a human capacity; instead, what Jaynes saw as such, might more clearly be recognized as "come-up-ance," a period of time when: 1) a sufficient number of left brain males united to rebel against domination by a few right brain based authorities; or, 2) Right brain ruled societies of absolute authorities functioning as earthly gods finally eroded as those with language-based left brain knowledge acquired enough nerve to assert themselves.
In either case, the distinguishing factor may be less related to a new mental faculty–which Jaynes called consciousness, than to spiritual capacities inherently rooted in whole brain living, but only to emerge in social circumstances when a sufficient number of citizens (such as, dis-possessed laborers/slaves) found courage, strength, and resources (e.g., weapons) to assert themselves in the presence of existing oppressions.
I came early to blindly worship at the throne of sense-making, rationality vs. feelings, sense vs. non-sense–a small human capacity rooted in the Broca's area of the left brain, in exclusion of right and lower brain capacities, such as, emotionality, intuition, amygdala wisdom, and early circumstantial learning.
In my unconscious idolatry of language-based logic, perhaps the most fragile and limited of all human capacities, I not only repressed and ignored larger dimensions of human potential, but also blindly rebelled against acknowledging their legitimate reality, as well as massive forces they silently wield.
I tried, unconsciously, to cope with these realities and "powers-that-be" outside my acknowledged and embraced self, with the fragile forces of left brain reasoning, unmindful both of my own errors as well as inevitable ultimate defeat whenever lighted reason pits itself against dark powers of "emotionality."
Furthermore, I only allowed conscious awareness of these massive "illogical" human capacities and powers when I could somehow force them through the fine screens of natural sense–that is, make them seem "reasonable" and sensible.
Since I also was born into and existed within a Christian family and community, and "naturally" honored and thought in religious language and concepts (Christian beliefs, bible, and Baptist approved behaviors), I also had to make "religious sense" of what I perceived before I could consciously accept and embrace my personal understanding.
Unconsciously idolizing "reason (making sense of perceptions)" in a religious context, I not only had to make my "seeing" sensible in secular terms, but also I faced the even more formidable challenge of making religious sense of what I saw–that is, making my natural perceptions seem reasonable in religious as well as secular language, in bible-based Christian theology as well as secular philosophy and psychology.
Consequently, I only see in hindsight, I have spent a large portion of my professional and private life in re-writing both Christian theology and secular philosophy/psychology in ways which conform to my personal insights–that is, translating existing language and beliefs of both the religious and secular worlds in which I live, into ideas (notions, theories, perspectives, understandings) which make sense to me based on my own experience.
(Saying/seeing my personal history in written form, I cannot but wonder: How godly ("omniscient") can one be! Or is it literally, how honestly human?)
Unlike how many others I know apparently are–that is, how darkly devoted they seem to be to our primal human agenda of "being ourselves," that is, unconsciously activating natural instincts while consciously cloaking "selfishness," etc. in veneers of socially and religiously virtuous notions, all this without requiring "making reasonable sense," let alone, conforming to religious ideals, my own dark devotions to Rationality have denied me such freedoms.
I have never ('till now!) been able to freely and openly activate my natural self–that is, consciously acknowledge my instincts, inclinations, desires, perceptions, experience, and insights without first forcing them through the narrow confines of reason (based on personal perceptions, that is, "what-I-see") and religious ideals, and, in most social circumstances, the additional screen of positive regard of others, that is, other-understanding (acknowledged seeing what I see), or at least apparent acceptance of my personal differences.
I have, in effect, been largely self-determined by my unconscious idolatry of Sense, and my mostly unrecognized dependence on the powerful meme I call What They Think. I have limited my conscious living, first, to worlds I could confine to narrow borders of reasonable sense, based on personal perceptions, and secondly to the even narrower fences of acknowledged understanding of others. Only alone, apart from "prying eyes" of other human lookers, have I occasionally ventured beyond the constrictions of: 1) sense, and 2) other-approval, daring to confront reality as revealed to me, without prejudiced blinders, rose-colored glasses, or godly judgments, as young, yet unrepressed children seem naturally to do.
Is this what Jesus meant in observing "Except ye become as little children ye shall in no wise enter the kingdom of heaven"?
I suspect so..
Image capture, whether in photographs, words, concepts, beliefs, symbolic objects (like shells on a seashore visit) or scenes in mind's eye and/or memory are all ideally like stepping stones on the natural path to absorbed becoming, selfing in self-less creativity. Unfortunately however, they often become stopping off places for unrecognized death in this potential Garden of Eden on earth.
I have spent the better part of my life collecting images of various sorts, occasionally transforming them into neat concepts on the much longer way to becoming what I know, image-less, including an "I" to hold my imaged experiences.
OPPOSITION WITHOUT JUDGMENT
I have, for most of my life, been moved by habitual deference and/or unconscious-at-the-time rebellion. Only now am I beginning to become able to confront opposition without judgment–that is, represent a different view ("stand up for myself"), without judging an opponent negatively, making, in effect, an enemy of those who oppose or see differently, mostly "looking down" on them without realizing I do so at the time.
My analysis: I have been left brain trapped and when any right brain emotion came uninvited, I have either tried to control/repress it with reasons, or else gotten trapped in its power without access to left brain sense. Blindly then, I have, naturally I think, seen opposition as enemy, that is, judged myself as good, the other as bad.
Only to the degree that I un-repress and become more whole brained–that is, remain able to make left brain sense while feeling right brain emotions, remaining honestly present and aware of my actual experience (right brain knowledge) and at the same time keep on thinking in left brain fashion, as in, remaining cognizant of facts such as, naturally different perspectives, my own limited views, and abilities to deceive ("act nice") as well as accept others who see differently at the time–all this without escaping honest presence into "enemy-making" and self-righteousness, as, I think, animals must do.
Specifically, this means to, for example, to be outwardly "friendly" while inwardly opposing another, to be, as I have judged negatively in the past, "two-faced," "insincere," "dishonest," or a "coward." Although I have embraced the concept of "artful deception," I have rarely been able to practice sensible deceptions without judgment of myself or others who oppose me.
Open deference (hiding myself), acting submissive or privately rebellious, have been my only embraced options. But yesterday, in a Board Meeting where I am deeply opposed to the actions of a majority, I came to see that I can in fact consciously "schmooze" or "act friendly" without repressing my opposition, and, and this is the crucial difference, still "use my head" in skillful negotiations, without enemy-making (at least in lesser degrees than ever before).
I understand this capacity as requiring whole brainedness–that is, embraced ability to be right brained, to activate genetic and acquired knowledge related to instincts, while at the same time being left brain capable (conscious and reasoning), moderating emotional powers generated by passions with what-I-know about psychology, including when deception is sensible and when overt force is feasible.
Or, in gambling wisdom: "knowing when to hold 'em and knowing when to fold," as well as waiting to count my money "when the playing's done."
Summary: Opposition without judgment is only possible when I, or to the degree that I, embrace my whole brain, right as well as left, as aspects of who I am at times of conflict.
This, I think, is one of my most pervasive, long range coping devices as well as personal errors, namely, majoring on words/language versus depth bodily experience.
I have avoided immediate perceptions (tree thinking) in favor of jumping to acquire and exercise secondary symbols (forest thinking). I have, unwittingly, used easier-to-manage mental symbols (word artistry) to evade challenges of remaining more fully present among the trees (experiencing bodily perceptions).
Ideally, in natural thinking, sans repression, forest type thinking (forming global, "impersonal," concepts based on tree type perceptions), is a tool for stabilizing and expanding satisfactions in and among the trees–that is, present-tense, personal experience. But in my case, forest thinking somehow became an escape from and/or substitute for tree imaging. Not that I failed to perceive the presented world, but rather than experiencing the depth and potential power of imaging such encounters, I quickly moved (and often still do!) from imaged perceptions of trees, on to forest type summaries–that is, from "generals" to "generalities," unwittingly cheating myself of enjoying delights of fuller presence, as well as embracing/activating powers inherent therein.
In summary: I, being more self-identified and consciously left brained, but with elements of right brain related capacities often nudging my awareness if not open activation, perceive the right brain world as primal and powerful–even threatening, in its ancient, natural state; but at the same time, I see it as relatively fragile when activated in society and human relationships–where left brain capacities are both more functional and highly valued. Even so, I view the universal human challenge to be returning to whole-brained living, "as little children" before repression and split brain identifications become our modes of social survival, only now with expanded knowledge and more conscious options.
Heaven here, as best I can tell, awaits such challenging resurrections....
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